leaves as pages in a secret text

Here is another Edward Hirsch poem, courtesy of the wonderful poetry subscription list Panhala, which I learned about thanks to Andy.

Poet, essayist, literary critic, English professor, Edward Hirsch is currently president of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, and is the author of two of my favorite books, How to Read a Poem and Fall in Love with Poetry, and The Demon and The Angel: Searching for the Source of Artistic Inspiration

I Am Going to Start Living Like a Mystic

Today I am pulling on a green wool sweater
and walking across the park in a dusky snowfall.

The trees stand like twenty-seven prophets in a field,
each a station in a pilgrimage--silent, pondering.

Blue flakes of light falling across their bodies
are the ciphers of a secret, an occultation.

I will examine their leaves as pages in a text
and consider the bookish pigeons, students of winter.

I will kneel on the track of a vanquished squirrel
and stare into a blank pond for the figure of Sophia.

I shall begin scouring the sky for signs
as if my whole future were constellated upon it.

I will walk home alone with the deep alone,
a disciple of shadows, in praise of mysteries.

(From Lay Back the Darkness)