After Working.

Robert Bly has died at 94. Here’s an early poem of his I like:

After Working


After many strange thoughts,
Thoughts of distant harbors, and new life,
I came in and found the moonlight lying in the room.


Outside it covers the trees like pure sound,
The sound of tower bells, or of water moving under the ice,
The sound of the deaf hearing through the bones of their heads.


We know the road; as the moonlight
Lifts everything, so in a night like this
The road goes on ahead, it is all clear.


  1. PlasticPaddy says

    Snowbanks North of the House

    Those great sweeps of snow that stop suddenly six
    feet from the house …
    Thoughts that go so far.
    The boy gets out of high school and reads no more
    the son stops calling home.
    The mother puts down her rolling pin and makes no
    more bread.
    And the wife looks at her husband one night at a
    party, and loves him no more.
    The energy leaves the wine, and the minister falls
    leaving the church.
    It will not come closer
    the one inside moves back, and the hands touch
    nothing, and are safe.

    The father grieves for his son, and will not leave the
    room where the coffin stands.
    He turns away from his wife, and she sleeps alone.

    And the sea lifts and falls all night, the moon goes on
    through the unattached heavens alone.

    The toe of the shoe pivots
    in the dust …
    And the man in the black coat turns, and goes back
    down the hill.
    No one knows why he came, or why he turned away,
    and did not climb the hill.

    Bly, Robert. 1981. The Man in the Black Coat Turns.

  2. Thanks for that. A fine poem.

  3. But so sad…

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