extract from “Monet refuses the operation” by Lisa Mueller; the lilies of Giverny; lamps in London.
Doctor, you say, there are no haloes / around the streetlights in Paris
and what I see is an aberration /caused by old age, an affliction.
I tell you it has taken me all my life / to arrive at the vision of gas lamps as angels,
to soften and blur and finally banish / the edges you regret I don’t see,
to learn that the line I called the horizon / does not exist and sky and water,
I will not return to a universe / of objects that don’t know each other,
as if islands were not the lost children / of one great continent.
The world is flux, and light becomes what it touches, / becomes water, lilies on water,
above and below water / becomes lilac and mauve and yellow …