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The Golden Hour
by Maja Trochimczyk

Why is the city so yellow? Because the sky
is so blue? Or maybe because merchants
love gold so much? Oh, there's nothing
wrong with loving gold, especially of
the spiritual kind—gold hearts, gold halos…

Yellow buildings huddle together, crowd the shore,
reflected in the mirror of Arno—gold thoughts
behind every window, soon to be brightened
with lamplight. The hour before sunset. My golden
years before leaving this life for another.

All gold, or fool's gold?

We grow wiser, as our hair turns from gold
to silver, as the past dissolves in the golden mist
of barely remembering—oh, yes, I think it was there
in the meadow of poppies and white daisies
with bright yellow hearts, that I looked at the sky—

full of clouds that turned from white into
gold into amber, the jewel skies of my sunset.
Not azure, not as bright as the sunset on Arno—
yet filled with the trills of the meadowlark
suspended in the cupola above Polish fields.

The sparkling gems of its song fell on the grass,
on the daisies, on me. I looked up and could not find
this magic singer in the broad expanse of clouds,
just like the ones above the still waters of Arno—
without meadow, without daisies, without me.


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