Daughter

Daughter

Daughter

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A weekly poem, read by the author.
July 23 1998 3:30 AM

Daughter

To hear the poet read "Daughter," click here.

i. The Season



The edge of spring.
The dark is wet. Already
stars are tugging at
their fibrous roots:
In February
they will fall and shine
from the roadsides
in their yellow hundreds.
My first child
was conceived in this season.
If I wanted a child now
I could not have one.
Except through memory.
Which is the ghost of the body.
Or myth.
Which is the ghost of meaning.

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ii. The Loss

All morning
the sound of chain-saws.
My poplar tree has been cut down.
In dark spring dawns
when I could hardly raise
my head from the pillow
its sap rose
thirty feet into the air.
Into daylight. Into the last of starlight.
I go out to the garden
to touch the hurt wood spirits.
The injured summers.
Out of one of them a child runs.
Her skin printed with leaf-shadow.
And will not look at me.

iii. The Bargain

The garden creaks with rain.
The gutters run with noisy water.
The earth shows its age and makes a promise
only myth can keep. Summer. Daughter.

Irish poet Eavan Boland is a professor of English at Stanford University and author of Object Lessons and An Origin Like Water. Her book The Lost Land will appear this fall.