On The Counterfactual
Deadening metaphysics are,
simply, and so no beginning.
Let them mock us then, and start there.
How little subtlety there is
in observing that time passes.
A brute fact, with a distinct lack
of alchemy, of a soft touch,
poppy-petal light, skin on skin.
It has instead a discipline
A brutal self-reliance, hard
like blows to the back of the skull.
Consider reaching beyond it;
Stepping in the same river twice
And the strange tyranny
Of its impossibility.
Yet how the prospect beguiles.
To bathe in last year’s ancient rains,
To have them drawn back from the sea
And so pass out of things’ passing.
Outside endurance, enchantment,
And inside enchantment, nowhere
Endlessly left to twist tighter,
Doubling back, and again,
Ever watching each thing's leaving.