Triage Poem By Margot Schilpp
It is a kind of triage, a setting
of priorities, this loving the bud
and hating the wilted flower: the red
of geraniums, another siren, another
little death resting in a bush, where
the air is different, the light
is different, the very molecules
we are, are different. All the stars
are out tonight, and I am spilling
salt, watching its crystals fall
into the patterns of stars, into
beautiful sadnesses. Vega, Sirius,
Alpha Centauri: I am wishing
on them until I run out of names.
It is the month of buds
and the vines begin their strangulations.
This life is a falling-away,
a discarding, though we collect
many things—our supplies of helium
and laughter are not in danger.
Still the end of winter turns
into itself: we must stay
in our own bodies, and though
we may leave cells on the pages
or on doorknobs we turn,
the stars keep turning out to be,
only the idea of stars,
before their light can reach us.
from The World’s Last Night