The Changing Light

by Lawrence Ferlinghetti

The changing light

at San Francisco

is none of your East Coast light

none of your

pearly light of Paris

 

The light of San Francisco

is a sea light

an island light

 

And the light of fog

blanketing the hills

drifting in at night

through the Golden Gate

to lie on the city at dawn

 

And then the halcyon late mornings

after the fog burns off

and the sun paints white houses

with the sea light of Greece

with sharp clean shadows

making the town look like

it had just been painted

 

But the wind comes up at four o’clock

sweeping the hills

 

And then the veil of light of early evening

 

And then another scrim

when the new night fog

floats in

 

And in that vale of light

the city drifts

anchorless upon the ocean

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