Stephen Dunn -- New and Selected Poems 1974 - 1994It was no place for the faithless,
so I felt a little odd
walking the marshland with my daughters,Canada geese all around and the blueherons just standing there;
safe, and the abundance of swans.The girls liked saying the words,
egret, whooping crane, and they likedwhen I agreed. The casinos were a few miles
to the east.
I liked saying craps and croupierand sometimes I wanted to be lost
in those bright
windowless ruins. It was April,the gnats and black flies
weren't out yet.
The mosquitoes hadn't risenfrom their stagnant pools to trouble
paradise and to give us
the great right to complain.I loved these girls. The world
awaited their beauty and beautyis what others want to own.
I'd keep that
to myself. The obviouswas so sufficient just then.
Blackbird. "Yes," I said.But already we were near the end.
I thought. Praise whatever you can.
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