“Bay Poem from Berkeley” by Sandra Cisneros

Initially I was looking for a Rothko-esque ombré blue abstraction, but I think this Laura Bell porthole suits the idea as well. (“Blue light from the bay” is a little more sparkly, though, with the blue and glisten of a windy, sunny day.)

Bay Poem from Berkeley
By Sandra Cisneros

Mornings I still
reach for you before
opening my eyes.

An antique habit from
last summer when we pulled
each other into the heat of groin
and belly, slept with an arm
around the other.

The Texas sun was like that.
Like a body asleep beside you.

But when I open my eyes
to the flannel and down,
mist at the window and blue
light from the bay, I remember
where I am.

This weight
on the other side of the bed
is only books, not you. What
I said I loved more than you.
True.

Though these mornings
I wish books loved back.

(Ferry from Ardrossan Harbor by Laura Bell)

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4 thoughts on ““Bay Poem from Berkeley” by Sandra Cisneros

  1. This poem is so exceptional! I heard you read it on the radio while driving home from the bay area this weekend, just after hearing about a close friend/mother-figure who had died and your words, well beyond this poem, settled my heart in just the way I needed. I have been sharing it with friends every since and wanted to say thank you.

    • I’m so glad you like this poem, Carisa. I’m afraid I wasn’t the one to read it on the radio (perhaps that was Ms. Cisneros herself?), but it definitely is one of my favorite poems as well.

    • Wasn’t it in Jerry Maguire where Dorothy (Renée Zellweger) was like, “I’ve had three lovers in four years, and all of them ran a distant second to a good book and a warm bath”? Haha. Books are comforting in a way old friends are, for sure. Constant, and you gravitate toward the ones that “get” you. :)

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