I thought life came again
straight from a blank —
the breathing, unfeigned
the pulse, of porcelain,
just as the sea comes
from the moon —
miraculous and plain.
Time turned to a shiver
my heart — to bread,
its pulp soaked in milk,
melting as in prayer.
Deep in the blue ahead
flared the incision of a wing.
But the instant receded
chased by an old joke
a cliché — the ocean,
barely rustling,
was served in a cup.
That spoonful of light
eclipsed the vaster moon,
a crumb of madeleine
idly sinking, woke me up —
The sky was silent,
all grey, like Combray.
Everything ironed flat,
everything commonplace.
Waves couldn’t break
neither shells, quiet
as cakes. Songless
birds died of satiety
in their cages.
Yet the echo
of Thunder — gone
— itself consoled,
in a rumble of pearl
my Eastern soul.