WORDS AND THE DIMINUTION OF ALL THINGS

The brief secrets are still here,
                             and the light has come back.
The word remember touches my hand,
But I shake it off and watch the turkey buzzards bank and wheel
Against the occluded sky.
All of the little names sink down,
                             weighted with what is invisible,
But no one will utter them, no one will smooth their rumpled hair.

There isn’t much time, in any case.
There isn’t much left to talk about
                             as the year deflates.
There isn’t a lot to add.
Road-worn, December-colored, they cluster like unattractive angels
Wherever a thing appears,
Crisp and unspoken, unspeakable
                             in their mute and glittering garb.

All afternoon the clouds have been sliding toward us
                                   out of the
       Blue Ridge.
All afternoon the leaves have scuttled
Across the sidewalk and driveway, clicking their clattery claws.
And now the evening is over us,
Small slices of silence
                   running under a dark rain,
Wrapped in a larger.

  — Charles Wright (b. 1935), American poet.