Louise Bogan
All night the cocks crew, under a moon like day,
And I, in the cage of sleep, on a stranger's breast,
Shed tears, like a task not to be put away --
In the false light, false grief in my happy bed,
A labor of tears, set against joy's undoing.
I would not wake at your word, I had tears to say.
I clung to the bars of the dream and they were said,
And pain's derisive hand had given me rest
From the night giving off flames, and the dark renewing.

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From The Blue Estuaries: poems 1923-1968, Louise Bogan (Noonday Press, 1995).
Poem Copyright © 1968, Louise Bogan.

All other content Copyright © 1996, Marc Mosko.