The House Of Dust Part 03 07 Porcelain

You see that porcelain ranged there in the window—
Platters and soup-plates done with pale pink rosebuds,
And tiny violets, and wreaths of ivy?
See how the pattern clings to the gleaming edges!
They're works of art—minutely seen and felt,
Each petal done devoutly. Is it failure
To spend your blood like this?

Study them . . . you will see there, in the porcelain,
If you stare hard enough, a sort of swimming
Of lights and shadows, ghosts within a crystal—
My brain unfolding! There you'll see me sitting


The House Of Dust Part 02 02 The Fulfilled Dream

More towers must yet be built—more towers destroyed—
Great rocks hoisted in air;
And he must seek his bread in high pale sunlight
With gulls about him, and clouds just over his eyes . . .
And so he did not mention his dream of falling
But drank his coffee in silence, and heard in his ears
That horrible whistle of wind, and felt his breath
Sucked out of him, and saw the tower flash by
And the small tree swell beneath him . . .
He patted his boy on the head, and kissed his wife,
Looked quickly around the room, to remember it,—


The House Of Dust Part 01 07 Midnight bells toll, and along the cloud-high towers

Midnight; bells toll, and along the cloud-high towers
The golden lights go out . . .
The yellow windows darken, the shades are drawn,
In thousands of rooms we sleep, we await the dawn,
We lie face down, we dream,
We cry aloud with terror, half rise, or seem
To stare at the ceiling or walls . . .
Midnight . . . the last of shattering bell-notes falls.
A rush of silence whirls over the cloud-high towers,
A vortex of soundless hours.

'The bells have just struck twelve: I should be sleeping.


The House

They are building a house
half a block down
and I sit up here
with the shades down
listening to the sounds,
the hammers pounding in nails,
thack thack thack thack,
and then I hear birds,
and thack thack thack,
and I go to bed,
I pull the covers to my throat;
they have been building this house
for a month, and soon it will have
its people...sleeping, eating,
loving, moving around,
but somehow
now
it is not right,
there seems a madness,
men walk on top with nails


The Hand of Glory, The Nurse's Story

Malefica quaedam auguriatrix in Anglia fuit, quam demones horribiliter extraxerunt, et imponentes super equum terribilem, per aera rapuerunt; Clamoresque terribiles (ut ferunt) per quatuor ferme miliaria audiebantur.

Nuremb. Chron.

On the lone bleak moor,
At the midnight hour,
Beneath the Gallows Tree,
Hand in hand
The Murderers stand
By one, by two, by three!
And the Moon that night
With a grey, cold light
Each baleful object tips;
One half of her form
Is seen through the storm,


The Greater Cats

The greater cats with golden eyes
Stare out between the bars.
Deserts are there, and the different skies,
And night with different stars.
They prowl the aromatic hill,
And mate as fiercely as they kill,
To roam, to live, to drink their fill;
But this beyond their wit know I:
Man loves a little, and for long shall die.

Their kind across the desert range
Where tulips spring from stones,
Not knowing they will suffer change
Or vultures pick their bones.
Their strength's eternal in their sight,


The Great Chinese Dragon

The great Chinese dragon which is the greatest dragon in all the
world and which once upon a time was towed across the
Pacific by a crew of coolies rowing in an open boat—was
the first real live dragon ever actually to reach these shores

And the great Chinese dragon passing thru the Golden Gate
spouting streams of water like a string of fireboats then broke
loose somewhere near China Camp gulped down a hundred
Chinese seamen and forthwith ate all the shrimp in San Francisco Bay


The Grave Of The Kitchen Mouse

The stone says "Coors"
The gay carpet says "Camels"
Spears of dried grass
The little sticks the children gathered
The leaves the wind gathered

The cat did not kill him
The dog did not, not the trap
Or lightning, or the rain's anger
The tree's claws
The black teeth of the moon

The sun drilled over and over
Dusk of his first death
The earth is worn away
A tuft of gray fur ruffles the wind
One paw, like a carrot
Lunges downward in darkness
For the soul


The Garden by Moonlight

A black cat among roses,
Phlox, lilac-misted under a first-quarter moon,
The sweet smells of heliotrope and night-scented stock.
The garden is very still,
It is dazed with moonlight,
Contented with perfume,
Dreaming the opium dreams of its folded poppies.
Firefly lights open and vanish
High as the tip buds of the golden glow
Low as the sweet alyssum flowers at my feet.
Moon-shimmer on leaves and trellises,
Moon-spikes shafting through the snowball bush.


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