Sea garden
Hilda (Doolittle) Aldington

NIGHT

THE night has cut
each from each
and curled the petals
back from the stalk
and under it in crisp rows;
under at an unfaltering pace,
under till the rinds break,
back till each bent leaf
is parted from its stalk;
under at a grave pace,
under till the leaves
are bent back
till they drop upon earth,
back till they are all broken.
O night,
you take the petals
of the roses in your hand,
but leave the stark core
of the rose
to perish on the branch.
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