Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry: A Piano at Evening

Edited and introduced by Wesley McNair, Maine Poet Laureate

Over the years Thomas Carper of Cornish has published his accomplished sonnets in some of this country’s best literary magazines. Today’s sample links piano music at twilight with the art of Corot.

A Piano at Evening by Thomas Carper

Il  étonne lentement.
(He astonishes slowly.)
    Baudelaire, on the paintings of Corot
The music she’s performing, while the sun
Sinks down, comes softly through an open door
Into the evening calm, and has begun
Altering all we thought we’d known before.
The bushes by the porch, a dusty green
Throughout the inattentions of the day,
Now look more deeply colored, with a sheen
That glimmers as we pause to hear her play.
And now the fine proportions of a tree
Are vivid. While arpeggios declare
Her mastery of the difficult, we see
New symmetries, as vistas everywhere
By slow astonishment are rearranged.
We walk on toward a growing darkness, changed.

Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry is produced in collaboration with the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance. Poem copyright © 2012 Thomas Carper. Reprinted from Creator, by permission of Thomas Carper. Questions about submitting to Take Heart may be directed to Gibson Fay-LeBlanc, Special Consultant to the Maine Poet Laureate, at mainepoetlaureate@gmail.com or 207-228-8263. Take Heart: Poems from Maine, an anthology collecting the first two years of this column, is now available from Down East Books.