The Jewels with Which to Make Do,
the Jewels That There Were
The woman is wearing, with such style
and intention, only one earring—
she makes the half lost
exquisite. Praise her.
As we praise parks, what’s left of wilderness,
and the literature of the diaspora.
Give her the unmatched remainders
of our pairs—one stud, one star, one single hoop,
an actual diamond, antique,
much iridescence, incomplete.
Compliment her further by recalling
that the forest was finest in its first growth—
high canopies hung with the lobes
of a multiplicity of leaves,
chestnuts set in the prongs of pods,
and below, made of birch bark’s silver
and mud, a few homes
built where their inhabitants belonged.
Then, make your greatest admiration awareness
that ears already so beautiful ought to have
better: jewels in a complete set,
presented in a box that opens
to its landscape of velvet, opulent
threads not yet asked to rise back
from the crush of any touch.