“Effulgent” by David M. Katz
Part seemed she of the effulgent thought —“Her Initials,” Thomas Hardy
Glitter, brilliance, candor, dazzle;
Luster, splendor, lambent lightness;
She evokes a lucid ghazal
All shot through with flashing brightness:
Of those words, he chose “effulgent.”
Anhedonic to a fault, dour
Hardy’s verse betrays his waning
Adolescent self in flower,
Breaking up while it was raining.
Then the rain seemed less than urgent.
Breaking up bore greater terrors,
Separate deaths in separate squalor;
Marriage seemed the lesser horror.
But error piled on error, and her failure
Left his kisses less indulgent,
Made them gutter, slacken, lessen,
Darken, die. He starts to shimmer
Only when the graveyard glistens.
Neutral tones are growing dimmer.
Wanting light, he chose “effulgent.”