I once asked Longfellow if he could write
A poem as well that ended with the arrow
Broken where it fell, the song stolen,
Or both forgotten, never recovered at all?
I wanted him to make it a happy poem,
Happier than that happy-ending poem
He wrote, the kind of poem impossible
For most, the poem that flies in the night,
But that was another poet, different trope,
And not either what I wanted, not quite.
Can a poem contain confirmation of its loss
And content us with what it has found?