Robert Frost: Meeting And Passing

Woman With A Parasol Facing Right, Claude Monet, 1886.

Woman With A Parasol Facing Right, Claude Monet, 1886.

This poem flitted through my mind on the way to my Japanese lesson this morning. There I was, in the midst of Tokyo’s endless skyscrapers, whispering Robert Frost to myself. “Afterward I went passed what you had passed/Before we met and you what I had passed,” I murmured quietly, as it started to rain.

“Meeting and Passing”
by Robert Frost

As I went down the hill along the wall
There was a gate I had leaned at for the view
And had just turned from when I first saw you
As you came up the hill. We met. But all
We did that day was mingle great and small
Footprints in summer dust as if we drew
The figure of our being less that two
But more than one as yet. Your parasol
Pointed the decimal off with one deep thrust.
And all the time we talked you seemed to see
Something down there to smile at in the dust.
(Oh, it was without prejudice to me!)
Afterward I went past what you had passed
Before we met and you what I had passed.

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