Epithalamion, Memorial Day

By R.A. VILLANUEVA

Forecasts say prepare for rain, so you will—
will keep at the ready tarp and cord, tents

and candles. And you will drink to the gulls
circling and the May sun high above rocks

ahead of you which promise everything
will be just fine. That this is for good. That

you are the answer to Suzhou gardens
lit by the moon, a caldera sunset,

bunkers off the coast at dawn. Allow them
their quiet warships and wreaths. You have wine

in sight of Saturn, peony and drum
and pearl. Hold now to the sound of a life

you’ve waited your life for. Yours is this blue
to swim under, this sky to leap into.

 

R.A. Villanueva is the author of Reliquaria, winner of the 2013 Prairie SchoonerBook Prize. He is also the winner of the 2013 Ninth Letter Literary Award for poetry. A founding editor of Tongue: A Journal of Writing & Art, his writing has appeared inAGNI, Gulf Coast, Virginia Quarterly Review, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency,Bellevue Literary Review, DIAGRAM, and elsewhere. He lives in Brooklyn.

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Epithalamion, Memorial Day

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