Recovering Amid the Farms
Every morning the sad girl brings her three sheep
and two lambs laggardly to the top of the valley,
past my stone hut and onto the mountain to graze.
She turned twelve last year and it was legal
for the father to take her out of school. She knows
her life is over. The sadness makes her fine,
makes me happy. Her old red sweater makes
the whole valley ring, makes my solitude gleam.
I watch from hiding for her sake. Knowing I am
there is hard on her, but it is the focus of her days.
She always looks down or looks away as she passes
in the evening. Except sometimes when, just before
going out of sight behind the distant canebrake,
she looks quickly back. It is too far for me to see,
but there is a moment of white if she turns her face
Born: 18 February 1925, Pennsylvania, USA
Died: 13 November 2012, California, USA
Gilbert was a poet, acquainted with the prominent figureheads of the Beat Movement, Jack Spicer and Allen Ginsberg. However, Gilbert considered himself a serious romantic poet. Over his five-decade career, he published five full collections of poetry