A weekly poem, read by the author.
May 5 1999 4:31 AM


Maybe you're a verb, or some
lost part of speech
that would let us talk sense
instead of monkey-screech


when we try to explain you
to our loved ones and ourselves
when we most need to.
Who knows why someone dies

on the brink of happiness,
his true love finally found,
the world showering success
as if the world were only a cloud

that floated in a dream
above a perfect day?
Are you also dreaming our words?
Give us something to say.

for D.B.

Michael Ryan is the director of the MFA program in poetry at the University of California Irvine. His new book of poems is This Morning

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