In the house my parents built. These mirrors have seen my face,
my naked body, for longer than any living thing: at twelve, sunburned
And skinny and flush with summer friendships from the beach;
at twenty-three, back from graduate school with the young writer
who’d become my wife, tired after walking ten miles from Hyannis
to Dennis to surprise my parents with a visit from Boston.
And now at fifty-six. Watching our three teenagers watch the sun
Set from the Cape’s highest point, stone tower a stone’s throw
From this house. O age inexorable and gentle has given me
A face weathered with seasons of gratitude. In this bathroom mirror is
An image of each time I’ve stood before it, in the same place,
Dripping wet, a little transparent, my selves seeing uneasily through each other’s
particular reflections. It took every second to get us all here.
No wonder the image wavers.
Outside and a mile away through scrub oak and sand the bay
glints with day’s embers, the slow ticking away of light
dropping through the horizon’s grate and the oncoming
Rolling rememberlessness of night, the countless
Reflections no one will see