Saturday, February 13, 2010

Bread and Butter

by Billy Collins

You could hear the ocean from my room
in the guesthouse where I often stayed,
that constant, distant, washy rumbling under the world.

I would sometimes slide back the glass door
and stand on the deck in a thin robe
just to be under the stars again under the clouds

and to hear more clearly the dogs
on the property barking--the brave mother and her pups,
all white, bearded, and low to the ground.

And now something tells me I should make
more out of all that,
moving down and inward where a poem is meant to go.

But this time I want to leave it be,
the sea, the stars, the dogs, and the clouds--
just written down, folded in fours, and handed to my host.

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