Winter 2004

Diane Reynolds


Diane Reynolds Diane Reynolds holds an M.F.A. from Columbia University and has recent poetry in The Amherst Review, Samsara Quarterly, Alligator Juniper, The Adirondack Review, and Red River Review. She was a guest of the Ucross Foundation and a nominee for a Pushcart Prize. She edits Zarigueya Press in Austin, Texas.
The Very Rich Hours    

If hell is a spiraling down, an infinite series
of concentric diminishments, the last circle is
a lavishly illustrated book of hours, a not-so-concise
argument for abstractions too beautiful
to name or hold, the world
of insistent heaven overhead, emphatic
earth beneath, a foreground of seasonal pursuits
laid out in snow or wheat, the rich and poor
condemned alike under a semi-circlet
of gilded days, ticmarks haloing
man and beast, and in the background,
what hurts: like the beginning,
the again of the human, the castle
like heaven itself, all cool walls
and cozy fires, ladies bathing, cooking,
a paradise the fine point
of all prayer. And counting the hours
by means of an apparatus that might
take up an entire living room, to which
the neighbors might come to admire and stay
to dream in, whiling away the little gold demerits above them,
so we say we are killing time, and although they never were
so easy to come by or to murder, these leafed and pounded-to-shine bits,
the world chopped and wheeling to meridians,
the bright and dark halves approach
like wary lovers to approximate each other,
to resemble and turn on their sides,
weary in this resting place, they are given
wholly over to wax and wane, as heat
and cold blossom and shrivel, orchestras
endlessly tuning.



Diane Reynolds: Poetry
Copyright © 2004 The Cortland Review Issue 25The Cortland Review