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A Quarterly Journal
Jeffrey Woodward, Founder & Owner
Ray Rasmussen, General Editor

Volume 12, Number 2, June 2018

Mary Frederick Ahearn
Pottstown, Pennsylvania, USA


"The winging bird longs for the old woods,
the fish in the pond thinks of the deeps it once knew."
                                                                     —T'ao Ch'ien

I've stopped driving by the old house, our home for near forty years. Even now, when the first ephemerals emerge and the oak buds swell there, I stay away. You didn't want to see it anymore, you had told me. You were, again, the wiser of the two of us, the more private with your yearnings, your beliefs. And your fears too, even into those last days, those sleepless nights until almost the end, that bitter end. Just a phrase once, the bitter end…

pine branches
scrape the window
shadows fall across the bed

It's been the coldest spring in years, late snow, sleet, day after day of gray skies—winter's refusal to depart, forever the season of your passing.… My heart burns dry with winter's ice.

early days
they say
every day a Jahrzeit

Notes: Epigraph from T'ao Ch'ien (365-427), trans. Burton Watson, The Columbia Book of Chinese Poetry: From Early Times to the 13th c.



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