In the Library
You are reading a book, and think you know
the end, but others can’t wait—they crowd
on the shelves, breathing. You stop and look around.
It is the best time: evening is coming,
a bronze haze has captured the sun,
lights down the street come on.
You turn a page carefully. Over your shoulder
another day has watched what you do
and written it down in that book
you can’t read till all the pages are done.
—William Stafford, from Even in Quiet Places (Confluence Press, 1996)