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Pick a spot in this painting, say a rock
in the stream, and look at it for a while,
letting the rest of the scene pour
into the periphery of your vision,
as this boisterous woods pours into busy brook
and finds itself at peace, hanging there
in the stone-rippled sky.
Now look about: Let the eye romp
in this luxurious light. I don't know
the names of all these trees and colors,
but I recognize everything, even things
never seen before. Has anything ever
been seen before?
Even if I try to squint this candy-colored
forest out of its enchantment, yet
I recognize everything.
Forest falls into stream, stream
into painting, painting
into our eyes, vision
into vision, sky into fall sky,
strangeness of a familiar reflection,
ripple of a reality roiled by art,
hanging in a sky deeper
than you knew you went,
and right here, in front,
where sky meets sky,
two ragged sun-bleached rocks you can,
in any world, touch.
February 22, 2004