Then came the darker sooner,

came the later lower.

We were no longer a sweeter-here

happily-ever-after. We were after ever.

We were farther and further.

More was the word we used for harder.

Lost was our standard-bearer.

Our gods were fallen faster,

and fallen larger.

The day was duller, duller

was disaster. Our charge was error.

Instead of leader we had louder,

instead of lover, never. And over this river

broke the winter’s black weather.

  • Catherine Wing, "The Darker Sooner" from The Best American Poetry 2010. Copyright © 2010 by Catherine Wing. Reprinted by permission of Catherine Wing.

  • Source: The Best American Poetry (Scribner, 2010)

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