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Eve, Afterwards

How can I tell you, in words, what it was like,
before words? Before names interposed themselves

between us and the world? Before life became
fragmented, hardened into atoms of meaning?

It was like this: I would see a flower, yellow
under a blue sky, and I would not think flower,

or blue, or yellow, or sky, I would not think
perfume or softness or springtime or fragility-

my eyes would hear the evanescent color
of each petal's wavering line, my hand

would see how soft the yellow rested
in the bloom, I would drink the slow sound

of the roots, breathe sharp leaf greenness,
hear endless staccato motioning of bees.

When I say I was in love with Eden
I mean exactly that: every moment I caressed

its unnamed beauties with my eyes,
my hands, my mouth, my senses, held it

to me like a lover, memorized its shapes,
its brilliant shadows, its essential light, each

wordless eternal moment is alive in me
still, and when you ask me, where was Eden,

how can I show you it is here, hallowing
this moment, hallowing us in this moment —

oh look! that tree! oh look!

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