Alphabet Song

by Linda Pastan

Linda Pastan

Like a train made up of 26 boxcars,
the alphabet drags such a heavy cargo
down the tracks, such strange,
compelling combinations

that we are left breathless, admiring
a world constructed of words
and sentences as much
as the sunsets and snowfalls

which perform their mysteries
before our distracted eyes.
Now we learn how alphabets of genes
produce jellyfish and roses

and the intricate brain
that invented language—then wrote
a poem which like a brief breeze
wafts over us and is gone.

Last updated June 26, 2015