Harlequin Dancers


They were harlequin dancers,

treading a gracious measure;

music-less, delicate, each of them being

the obverse of the other.

A fortunate conjunction, a synchronicity:

this side of time you may not see again

such symmetry.


 They were black and white to each other

snowfall on winter trees.

They were light and dark to each other; now

their days are pitiless, their nights are ice.

She lies bone-bare under desert sun; he

whirls in cold space.

 Masked and bespangled, androgyne,

they spiralled down the years;

but now the aeons weigh them down,

seconds are centuries.

The elegance is broken, the fine pattern gone,

and each is half of each again,

and all of none.