Saint Petersburg (Departure)

The drops at the station were for you—
not tears—just a shower of rain;
a mist washed over the city and hid the sadness
of Saint Peter’s pain.

The sky could not weep for what you
didn’t understand or for what I left unsaid;
the night was lonely and went looking for lovers
but lighted on us instead;

and the full moon, blind with envy, stared
down at the station’s endless line of tracks;
it had nowhere to go, nowhere
to wear its coat of black.

Not tears—just a shower of rain,
an arched sky under yellow clouds,
policemen who were as indifferent as angels,
and our farewell in crowd.

Russia disappeared behind the bump
and clack of the tracks, carriage lamps,
incriminating stares, passports,
and a flurry of stamps.

In the morning time collapsed: an ox
pulled a plow from the time of Peter the Great,
and a village, lost in a haze, waited
for the light to translate.

Then two dogs sharing a scrap of meat
passed by in a mist of doubt,
and a mare gazed at me from beyond the tracks.
What did I have to be sad about?

September wore its colors shyly
like a girl, and the sky at dawn was pale and blue,
What can I say? My mind was blank.
All my thoughts were with you.