Adrienne Rich

To Have Written the Truth

To have spent hours stalking the whine of an insect
have smashed its body in blood on a door
then lain sleepless with rage

to have played in the ship’s orchestra crossing
the triangle route
dissonant arpeggios under cocktail clatter

to have written the truth in a lightning flash
then crushed those words in your hand
balled-up and smoking

when self-absolution
easygoing pal of youth
leans in the doorframe

Kid, you always
                          took yourself so hard!