One looks from the train Almost as one looked as a child. In the sunlight What I see still seems to me plain, I am safe; but at evening As the lands darken, a questioning Precariousness comes over everything.
Once after a day of rain I lay longing to be cold; and after a while I was cold again, and hunched shivering Under the quilt's many colors, gray With the dull ending of the winter day. Outside me there were a few shapes Of chairs and tables, things from a primer; Outside the window There were the chairs and tables of the world.... I saw that the world That had seemed to me the plain Gray mask of all that was strange Behind it-of all that was-was all.
But it is beyond belief. One thinks, “Behind everything An unforced joy, an unwilling Sadness (a willing sadness, a forced joy) Moves changelessly”; one looks from the train And there is something, the same thing Behind everything: all these little villages, A passing woman, a field of grain, The miin who says good-bye to his wife_ A path through a wood full of lives, and the train Passing, after all unchangeable And not now ever to stop, like a heart-
It is like any other work of art. It is and never can be changed. Behind everything there is always The unknown unwanted life.