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Sonnets and other poems.
Essays on works of literature and sundry other subjects.

These Are the Things by Which I See Your Face

Of knowing and the world, II
by Lynn Michael Martin, Mar 15, 2018

These are the things by which I see your face—

they are my lonely nights through half-drawn blinds,

the starlight on the clouds which drapely winds

around this light-snarled earth, the fitful pace

of feet on floors, on grass, on every place

in which your form hides coy, and yet reminds

my restless steps with winds of various kinds

that you remain still in some breath or trace—

these are alone the holy things I know.

I’ve struggled forth my bravely guttered light,

entombed beneath the heaven’s grey its glow

like sounds of breath lost in a dun-draped night,

yet I’ve not tried so hard, nor striven quite

so that I’d not betimes glimpse light: soft, low.



This sonnet is the second of a cycle titled “Knowing and the World: Three Sonnets in Ascent.” All three center around an image of a face, its relationship with the world, and my relationship to both of them. Who are we, and who shall we become?