oughtful

poems, photographs, prose
by matthew

may 8, 2006 · tags: poetry photography

poem for a found paper crane

i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens; only something in me understands...
· E. E. Cummings, somewhere i have never travelled,gladly beyond


did the same small hands
that unfold dandelions,
tend abandoned gardens,
and rake ponds on windy days

fold you from castaway candybar wrapper
or discarded cigarette carton

deliberately, delicately,
as one would fold a frail and valuable map,
crown a cardhouse with the king of spades,
or spread the wings of a pinned insect?

were you marooned
on this low stone wall

like a compass rose
placed in the loneliest space on a map,
your four paper petals
pointing in all cardinal directions
at once, as if resolutely lost?

and isn't it true
that though you cannot fly
nor fold yourself into a paper plane

if i return tomorrow
you will probably be gone,

your lifting-off
implied but unseen,
like the wind's thin fingers
or the sun's soft thumb,

or as a question lifts gently
the end of a sentence?


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