Ten Poems by Leonardo Dellarocca

How was it that you died
waiting for the rain to stop?
Was it a cold day? was
the bell loud in the morning?
I come to your door in a song
and feel your shadow
on the other side,
your eyes lost in the room
the way a boy is lost
in his thoughts about flying,
or clouds drifting in street puddles.
What was it that kept you
from undoing your hair
in a tub of lavender and water?
The line is long outside your window;
people with gray flowers
and black umbrellas.
They want to have tea with you
and read Stephen Spender
while you sleep in your stained chair.
And if nobody speaks the whole
afternoon, that's ok, because
this room has a language of its own,
all wood and silver light.
It's like a big instrument
played by the mouth of silence.
When you wait at the window,
you fill the air the way a viola
fills the arms of a man.
What kind of day was it?
You put the picture in the fire
and looked out to the trees.
I understand that.
There have been times I whistled
a tune that sounded like that.
Like rain throbbing in an empty pail.