Poetry by Bruce Meyer


We were driving home in twilight
at the end of a long spring day.
The baby was asleep in her car seat.
A murmuration of starlings
shifted shape above a barn

as a meteor cut the afterglow.
At first, I thought a piece of the sky
had broken off the day

or how empty towns we passed
and houses with their lights on
at the end of rutted lanes
or how usual the unusual can be

when I look with astonishment
at the darkness rising before us
and realize how little I know.




All the long drive home
with black-out curtains
drawn around fallow farms,

we listen to jazz standards
and I sing along to keep you
awake, watching your fingers

keep time on the steering wheel
so our heartbeats are in sync.
Love is a kind of rhythm,

and knowing the words helps.
There is starlight in the voices,
the sound of spirits captured

in glass recording booths,
tunes passed from body to spirit
to summer before they knew

the resonance of their memory.
When we finally arrive home,
we open the bedroom windows,

the night a halcyon sea,
a breeze tinged with cool rain
that won’t fall until dawn.

It passes its fingers through
windchimes on our patio
and the night begins to sing,

a standard night in standard time.
I remember another night like this,
and will tell you in the morning

if there is time before time
must carry us off to our lives –
a night in New York City,

the windows of 44th and Sixth
burning as if small candles
after a soft but steady rain,

and how their yellow offerings
fell like answered prayers
to chart a road to stardust

as the city sweepers came,
ghostly in white uniforms,
and tried to clear the sidewalk

of fragments of the past
so all the discarded rhythms
could hear a heartbeat in the dawn.


About the contributor

Bruce Meyer
Canadian broadcaster, professor and well known writer, Bruce Meyer is author of many books of poetry, short stories, fiction and non-fiction.

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