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Pantoum: But You Are Gone

by Richard Hoffman


i.m. RJH 1950 –1972

 

I thought for a long time
if I was very quiet
for a long time
I might recall your voice.

If I was very quiet
I might long for you so long
I might recall your voice
as if my ear could sift the wind.

I might long for you so long,
for words you had spoken,
as if my ear could sift the wind
for things you said,

for words you had spoken,
that if I searched my memory
for things you said,
I might find you again;

that if I searched my memory
for a long time,
I might find you again
I thought for a long time.

 

Richard Hoffman is author of the award-winning Half the House: A Memoir, and Without Paradise: Poems. His writing, both prose and verse, has appeared in AGNI, Ascent, Harvard Review, Hudson Review, Poetry, Witness, and elsewhere. He has been awarded several fellowships and prizes, most recently a Massachusetts Cultural Council Fellowship in fiction, and The Literary Review’s Charles Angoff Prize. He teaches at Emerson College and in the Stonecoast MFA Program. (10/2006)


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