how dark the beginning


All  we ever talk of is light—

let there be light, there was light then,

good light—but what I consider

dawn is darker than all that.

So many hours between the day

receding and what we recognize

as morning, the sun cresting

like a wave that won’t break

over us—as if  light were protective,

as if  no hearts were flayed,

no bodies broken on a day

like today. In any film,

the sunrise tells us everything

will be all right. Danger wouldn’t

dare show up now, dragging

its shadow across the screen.

We talk so much of  light, please

let me speak on behalf

of  the good dark. Let us

talk more of how dark

the beginning of a day is.


Maggie Smith