<Love at First Sight>
by Wislawa Szymborska
hey’re both convinced
that a sudden passion joined them.
Such certainty is beautiful,
but uncertainty is more beautiful still.
Since they’d never met before, they’re sure
that there’d been nothing between them.
But what’s the word from the streets, staircases, hallways–
perhaps they’ve passed by each other a million times?
I want to ask them if they don’t remember–
a moment face to face in some revolving door?
perhaps a “sorry” muttered in a crowd?
a cut “wrong number” caught in the receiver?
but I know the answer.
No, they don’t remember.
They’d be amazed to hear
that Chance has been toying with them now for years.
Not quite ready yet
to become their Destiny,
it pushed them close, drove them apart,
it barred their path,
stifling a laugh,
and then leaped aside.
There were signs and signals,
even if they couldn’t read them yet.
Perhaps three years ago
or just last Tuesday
a certain leaf fluttered from one shoulder to another?
Something was dropped and then picked up.
Who knows, maybe the ball that vanished into childhood’s thicket?
There were doorknobs and doorbells where one touch had covered another beforehand.
Suitcases checked and standing side by side.
One night, perhaps, the same dream,
grown hazy by morning.
is only a sequel, after all,
and the book of events
is always open halfway through.