Once Later


It is not until later

that you have to be young


it is one of the things

you meant to do later


but by then there is

someone else living there


with the shades rolled down

how could you have been young there


at that time

with all that was expected


then what happened to

the expectations


there is no sign of them there

a shadow passes across the window shade


what do they know in there

whoever they are


W.S. Merwin