The even poverty of a bounded life . . .
We name a thing and then we know it,
take possession and make it ours.
Poverty, I name you “freedom”
and I am free.
This cell in my eighth year I call “solitude”
and the darkness does not betray me.
The days I call “now”
and do not count them.
There is only one “now” not several.
My past binds the keepers more securely
It is, more than mine, their prison.
This life, which is neither mine nor theirs
but that of the world,
I call “a green and growing thing”
and the swallows come from miles around
to build their nests.