Is this what happens? The soul,
after leaving the body,
wanders down alleyways searching
for something solid to inhabit,
even the heart of a howling dog
in a ruined city, even a leaf,
might do. Or it spends its time
staring into windows; waiting
for its shadow to appear.
Maybe it’s in a foreign room
listening for a hymn that’s yet
to be written. Perhaps it just leaves
traces, like notes in the margins
of a book that’s found its way
into the hands of someone
blessed with the task of translating.