..."When I come home the garden will be budding,
White petals breaking open, clusters of night flowers,
The far-off music of a tambourine.
A boy will pace among the passionflowers,
His eyes no longer two bruised surfaces.
I'll know the mouth of my young groom, I'll touch
His hands. Why do people lie to one another?"
poem excerpt from "Mummy of a Lady Named Jemutesonekh
from Letters to a Stranger
by Thomas James
Letters to a Stranger
edited by Lucie Brock-Broido, Mark Doty
“Letters to a Stranger is a book of dark intensities and deeply felt connections, both haunted and haunting, at once brooding, sensual and lucid . . . The voice in these poems – painfully lonely and filled with longing, estranged and religious – has stayed with me for more than twenty years. It deserves to be remembered.”
—EDWARD HIRSCH, The Washington Post