Without Fail

Every morning my grandfather comes down

the two-flight stairs and opens the door

to the kitchen where I am sitting eating

breakfast and he smiles and asks me a series

of questions that pertain to my existence.

Then he goes and fills the teapot

with tea leaves, spices, grains,

turns the hot water on and the day has begun;

though I have plunged into the Universe a thousand times

I do not tire of seeing him live

with the quiet magnificence of country folk

displaced into another place and time,

the geyser of the heart releasing waters

red as wine and deep as darkness,

our diffident mouths exceeding the rain,

our illustrious heritage of fire-wrapt bones

to be lost never again if we are emptied

by the Songs of the Abyss.

He is not tired.

I cannot speak, a tired man again,

never to be had.