Lost, Borrowed, Released

Arthur Sze
Sight Lines

from “Black Center”

when the last speaker of a language dies,
a hue vanishes from the spectrum of visible light.

from “First Snow”

you think you own a car, a house,
this blue-zigzagged shirt, but you just borrow these things.

from “The Far Norway Maples”

The unfolding of a life has junctures

that rupture plot: a child folds paper
and glues toothpicks, designs a split-level

house with white walls and pitched roof,
but his father snatches the maquette

and burns it. If you inhale and spore this moment,
it tumors your body, but if you exhale it,

you dissolve midnight and noon; sunlight
tilts and leafs the tips of the far Norway maples.

And so for day 2728

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