Last evening, I stopped by Lake Elmore, summertime sacred scene of popsicles, barefoot children running over immense lawns, swimming and more swimming. My daughter’s happy birthday parties, the little girls in their flowered dresses.
8 degrees Fahrenheit under a half moon and scattered stars, Orion’s belt hung over the snow-covered lake, hoarfrost creeping up the crumpled remainders of weeds. Scraps of clouds passed quickly over the moon. After too many meetings and too much talking, I gulped the cold eagerly, my boot heels on the sand-scattered road the only scuffling sounds. Ancient, great-horned Taurus, the bull in the spinning constellations, hung above me, familiar and dear as the oldest of lovers.
… There was a woman
I made love to and I remembered how, holding
her small shoulders in my hands sometimes,
I felt a violent wonder at her presence
like a thirst for salt, for my childhood river
with its island willows, silly music from the pleasure boat,
muddy places where we caught the little orange-silver fish
Robert Hass, “Meditation at Lagunitas”