Published by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc. FFRF.org

Heads Up poetry column: Sensual music

Vol. 36 No. 09 November 2019

Sensual music

what is past, or passing, or to come

— W.B. YEATS

You know that from day one you start

to lose a little of your heart;

your mother, with a world to save,

has given birth beside a grave,

and time, relentless surgeon’s knife,

year by year trims off your life.

But moments teach you not to be

deceived by immortality:

it’s far too little, far too much.

What you have is what you touch;

passion feeds on bread and bells,

a chime of sounds, bouquet of smells,

someone’s arm around your waist,

the best desire you’ll ever taste;

and every glance is one step of

the pilgrimage that leads to love —

silver voices, golden bough:

the immortality of now.

From New and Selected Poems, 1956-1996