Saturday, September 5, 2015

Broken but resilient

For What Binds Us
by Jane Hirshfield

There are names for what binds us:
strong forces, weak forces.
Look around, you can see them:
the skin that forms in a half-empty cup, 
nails rusted into the places they join, 
joints dovetailed on their own weight.
The way things stay so solidly
wherever they've been set down-
and gravity scientists say is weak.

And see how the flesh grows back 
across a wound, with more vehemence,
more strong
than the simple untested surface before.
There's a name for it on horses,
when it comes back darker and raised:  proud flesh,

as all flesh,
is proud of its wounds, wears them
as honors given up after battle,
small triumphs pinned to the chest-

And when two people have loved each other
see how it is like a 
scar between their bodies, 
stronger, darker, and proud;
how the black cord makes of them a single fabric
that nothing can tear or mend.

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