Lowell never used eaves

Lowell never used eaves.

Nothing can dislodge
the triangular blotch
of rot on the red roof,
a cedar hedge, or the shade of a hedge.

No ease to the eye

“Eaves” sound like “ease”; eaves are overhanging roofs.  Maybe he put eaves in the white space, in my white space.

“Eaves” would have made an elbow of sound and sense.  It’s sound; makes sense.  We use sounds and looks the same way, metaphorically, I think.  But is there a difference between “sounds good” and “looks good”?  ”Sounds good” is signing off on a plan — still sounding things out — while “looks good” is inspecting the product, the plan’s execution. A time delay between looks and sounds, like a time delay between lightning and thunder.  (Though “looks good” could mean approval of a written plan or a set of blueprints, certainly.

My parents will have lived in my childhood home fifty years summer after next.  I remember my father carrying around those blueprints when I was four or five, and spreading them on the white metal kitchen table with those thin, corrugated, steel sides that reminded me of the old house’s gutters where the paint had flaked off.  A father at that age is all sound and sense.)

I’m getting a head start on SoloPoMo, using some material I posted on an obscure WordPress.com blog while I mulled over how to redo my blog.   I’ve selected Robert Lowell’s “Eye and Tooth” for my celebration of SoloPoMo.

By Peter

After stints as a trial lawyer and a church worker, Peter Stephens has settled in as a Virginia high school English teacher. Peter has read several books and poems. He wrote none of the posts below filed under "Passages." Click the link at the end of each post to see it in the context of the author's original post.