There—there it is—in the deep, purple crescents beneath the old, remembered sparkle of now extinguished eyes. There in a devastating image from Wilbur, in a near-silent line of Thomas. In the broken forgiveness of your voice across the interminable wire, I hear it. In fifty seconds of Schubert that presses the burning coal up from its lodged space in the chest to the constrictions of the throat. Like swallowing warm shards of glass that start the swell of tears, ineffable, inexplicable—like the primal sound of first grief. Would that I could dissolve into the air—disintegrate into formlessness, indistinguishable from the dew drop that clings to your morning window.
Musical composition by Franz Schubert
Alina Gharabegian is Associate Professor and Chair of English at New Jersey City University. Her training is in Victorian literature, and she teaches 19th-century British literature, Modern Poetry, and writing. More recently, her scholarly attention has been drawn to questions of the East/West divide in literature. She is at work on a manuscript provisionally called The Poetics of Mourning in the Middle East. If she finds a spare moment, she turns to the tango.
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