Because by Linda Pastan

Goodbye, August.

Because
Linda Pastan

Because the night you asked me,
the small scar of the quarter moon
had healed—the moon was whole again;
because life seemed so short;
because life stretched before me
like the darkened halls of nightmare;
because I knew exactly what I wanted;
because I knew exactly nothing;
because I shed my childhood with my clothes—
they both had years of wear left in them;
because your eyes were darker than my father’s;
because my father said I could do better;
because I wanted badly to say no;
because Stanley Kowalski shouted “Stella…;”
because you were a door I could slam shut;
because endings are written before beginnings;
because I knew that after twenty years
you’d bring the plants inside for winter
and make a jungle we’d sleep in naked;
because I had free will;
because everything is ordained;
I said yes.

This is from Carnival Evening by Linda Pastan, published by W.W. Norton & Company, 1998.

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