Miles without refuge for us, the night full
of strangers and remembering ways. The rain,
that makes all intimate, softly lets down
her glassy hair, and is a bride of steel.
Now this waste of city and our chance,
the golden-dappled sleeping animal,
blunts the wet wind and is innocence;
turns into love, for dark is its defence
and, in its breath, our sore defences fail.
We cannot count the dangers of tonight:
those dragon-haunted fields between us, where
iron rages against rain and air
and even our love, being naked, blows about;
treason of body, or of child; or luck
a frantic lion echoing in the street:
we give, tonight, what cannot be caught back
- the sadness and the trust, ourselves who look
past hopeless acres for each other's light.
Oh dark defend you, whom I love, and fill
with shining symbols the bed's dangerous lap,
and have begotten you on your sleep
quiet as a little home, a bell
though resting that calls distances together.
We open arms into the death of will:
soundless within, shadows and echoes gather
out of the poem, out of the pain, out of the weather,
the living refuge for us, the night full.