Dear Nadine,

Dear Nadine,

I am so very sorry,

and regret very sincerely,

my long-delayed reply to your letter.

But let me begin:

I began the poem in question

as a sonnet: 14 lines (Petrachean:

abbaabba, cdecde.)

It’s now an epic-postmodern,

its own lyric-agonistes. I excerpt

page 24 here as penance:

In terms oceanic pulses.

/ directly similar: In part denizens

—coral’d & banded,

perfect in symmetry!

But yes, Nadine, writing

is but speaking’s other

stratagem. Not to be tread upon.

It senses. It wriggles

with wind to fit / to find

one more instance of itself

in order to cohere.

Having neither sepals.

Nor formidable aspect.

But song—

one white Amur [ashen] & [lilac].

Best wishes,

your contrite

& tardy correspondent.