from Selected Poems, 1946-1986
James Merrill, 1926-1995, American
Having used every subterfuge
To shake you, lies, fatigue, or even that of passion,
Now I see no way but a clean break.
I add that I am willing to bear the guilt.
Double Rift IV, 2016, rolled Paintstick and silicon on paper; edition 9 of 12; Richard Serra, born 1939, American. Philadelphia Art Museum
You nod assent. Autumn turns windy, huge,
A clear vase of dry leaves vibrating on and on.
We sit, watching. When I next speak
Love buries itself in me, up to the hilt.
Voices, watercolour and graphite on paper, 1984; Tom Judd, born 1952, American. Woodmere Museum of Art, Philadelphia