American Culture · American Literature · Anthology · Classic · Collection · Compilation · Contemporary · Poetry

William Jay Smith

Thinking of you this evening,
I think of mystery;
I think of umbrellas of crystal
Shading a cinnamon sea;
I think of swallow-tailed shadows
Enveloping history;
And the past becomes the future,
And the present is yet to be;
And life is a rain-swept mirror
Through which perpetually
A girl with bright hair flowing,
Dappled dark coat blowing,
Into the unknown, knowing
Walks with me.

— William Jay Smith, “The Girl in the Black Raincoat,” The World below the Window: Poems 1937-1997 (Johns Hopkins University Press, 1998)

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