Originally published in Beast in View (1944)

When I think of him, midnight
Opens about me, and I am more alone;
But then the poems flower from the bone.—

You came to me bearing the truth in your two hands;
I sit and look down at my hand like an astonished
Fortune-teller, seeing the mortal flesh.

Your wish was strong the first day of the war
For it had been strong before, and then we knew
All that I had to be, you had to do.

Once when you stood before me, kisses rose
About my lips; poems at my lips rise,
Your live belief fills midnight and my eyes.

© Muriel Rukeyser