The universe is sad.
I heard it when Artur Rubenstein played the piano.
He was a little man with small hands.
We were bombing Germany by then.
I went to see him a dark warehouse
where a piano had been placed for his practice—
or whatever he did before a recital.
He signed the book I had with me—
it was called Warsaw Ghetto.
I later heard about him—
his affairs with young women—
if only I had known—but I was
in love with you.
Artur is dead;
and you, my darling,
the imprint of your face, alert like a deer—
oh god, it is eaten away—
the earth has taken it back
but I listen to Artur—
he springs out of the grave—
his genius wired to this tape—
a sad trick of the neural pathways, resonating flesh
and my old body remembers the way you touched me.