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The Prediction

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The Prediction - Mark Strand

That night the moon drifted over the pond,

turning the water to milk, and under

the boughs of the trees, the blue trees,

a young woman walked, and for an instant

the future came to her:

rain falling on her husband's grave, rain falling

on the lawns of her children, her own mouth

filling with cold air, strangers moving into her house,

a man in her room writing a poem, the moon drifting into it,

a woman strolling under its trees, thinking of death,

thinking of him thinking of her, and the wind rising

and taking the moon and leaving the paper dark.


This melancholic poem, rich in imagery, attracts me. It pulls me into its breathless scene which has the tense quiet of a Bergman film.

There is a whisper of the rhythm of a Patti Smith poem for me or somehow her presence. She is the young woman, but I see her young and old in my mind and both incarnations fit.

I think also of the long scene in To the Lighthouse when time passes and the house slowly falls to ruin.

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