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NEW POEMS 66 NEW POEMS LOUISE GLÜCK CASTILE* Orange blossoms blowing over Castile children begging for coins I met my love under an orange tree or was it an acacia tree or was he not my love? I read this, then I dreamed this: can waking take back what happened to me? Bells of San Miguel ringing in the distance his hair in the shadows blond-white I dreamed this, does that mean it didn’t happen? Does it have to happen in the world to be real? I dreamed everything, the story became my story: he lay beside me, my hand grazed the skin of his shoulder Mid-day, then early evening: in the distance, the sound of a train *Louise Glück wrote “Castille” after reading Kate O’Brien’s novel Mary Lavelle. The poem appears in Glück’s new collection, Vita Nova, published by Ecco Press in April 1999. NEW POEMS 67 But it was not the world: in the world, a thing happens finally, absolutely, the mind cannot reverse it. Castile: nuns walking in pairs through the dark garden. Outside the walls of the Holy Angels children begging for coins When I woke I was crying, has that no reality? I met my love under an orange tree: I have forgotten only the facts, not the inference – there were children somewhere, crying, begging for coins I dreamed everything, I gave myself completely and for all time And the train returned us first to Madrid then to the Basque country ...


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pp. 66-67
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