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Mad Day In March

Written by: Philip Levine | Biography
 Beaten like an old hound 
Whimpering by the stove, 
I complicate the pain 
That smarts with promised love. 
The oilstove falls, the rain, 
Forecast, licks at my wound; 
Ice forms, clips the green shoot, 
And strikes the wren house mute. 

May commoner and king, 
The barren bride and nun 
Begrudge the season's dues. 
May children curse the sun, 
Sweet briar and grass refuse 
To compromise the spring, 
And both sower and seed 
Choke on the summer's weed. 

Those promises we heard 
We heard in ignorance; 
The numbered days we named, 
And, in our innocence, 
Assumed the beast was tamed. 
On a bare limb, a bird, 
Alone, arrived, with wings 
Frozen, holds on and sings.