Other men remember the false gardens
of love, and the days they were in love
or thought they were in love, and others
the books they read as children, books that marked
their lives forever, though they couldn’t know
in those days how the real world operates.
And all of them take comfort in this way
and even grow enthusiastic when
they realize that memory can shape
itself at will and provide the things
that love and books and gardens can’t provide.
I remember what I didn’t undertake:
more than anything, the spring campaigns.