Were that I were immovable as rock
While you were irresistible as water!
As it is, I wince at every shock
Who ought to be absorbent as a blotter.
My will, eroded by the waves and spray
Of words, by interdiction and injunction,
Has at last been almost worn away
Through emotional lotion and love’s oceanic unction.

Nag, nag, nag on these old grey stones, O sea,
You cannot and you will not break my heart,
Which is made of adamant. O see,
Though penetrated by each stupid dart,
It sparkles like a diamond. Così
fan tutte, armed by industry and art.

This appeared in the March 2013 issue.

Daryl Hine earned MacArthur and Guggenheim Fellowships over the course of his illustrious career. He died in August 2012.

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