Welcome And Farewell

Quick throbb'd my heart: to norse! haste, haste,

And lo! 'twas done with speed of light;
The evening soon the world embraced,

And o'er the mountains hung the night.
Soon stood, in robe of mist, the oak,

A tow'ring giant in his size,
Where darkness through the thicket broke,

And glared with hundred gloomy eyes.

From out a hill of clouds the moon

With mournful gaze began to peer:
The winds their soft wings flutter'd soon,

And murmur'd in mine awe-struck ear;


Weep no more

WEEP no more, nor sigh, nor groan,
Sorrow calls no time that 's gone:
Violets pluck'd, the sweetest rain
Makes not fresh nor grow again.
Trim thy locks, look cheerfully;
Fate's hid ends eyes cannot see.
Joys as winged dreams fly fast,
Why should sadness longer last?
Grief is but a wound to woe;
Gentlest fair, mourn, mourn no moe.


Web

Intricate and untraceable
weaving and interweaving,
dark strand with light:

designed, beyond
all spiderly contrivance,
to link, not to entrap:

elation, grief, joy, contrition, entwined;

shaking, changing,

forever

forming,

transforming:

all praise,

all praise to the

great web.


War Music Down on your knees, Achilles

An account of books 16-19 of the Iliad by Homer.

Down on your knees, Achilles. Farther down.
Now forward on your hands and put your face into the dirt,
And scrub it to and fro.
Grief has you by the hair with one
And with the forceps of its other hand
Uses your mouth to trowel the dogshit up;
Watches you lift your arms to Heaven; and then
Pounces and screws your nose into the filth.
Gods have plucked drawstrings from your head,
And from the templates of your upper lip
Modelled their bows.


Wanderer's Return

My home is so glad, my heart is so light,
My wandering boy has returned to­p;night.
He is blighted and bruised, I know, by sin,
But I am so glad to welcome him in.

The child of my tenderest love and care
Has broken away from the tempter's snare;
tonight my heart is o'erflowing with joy,
I have found again my wandering boy.

My heart has been wrung with a thousand fears,
Mine eyes have been drenched with the bitterest tears;
Like shadows that fade are my past alarms,
My boy is enclasped in his mother's arms.


Walking Around

It so happens I am sick of being a man.
And it happens that I walk into tailorshops and movie
houses
dried up, waterproof, like a swan made of felt
steering my way in a water of wombs and ashes.

The smell of barbershops makes me break into hoarse
sobs.
The only thing I want is to lie still like stones or wool.
The only thing I want is to see no more stores, no gardens,
no more goods, no spectacles, no elevators.

It so happens that I am sick of my feet and my nails
and my hair and my shadow.


Voices of Earth

We have not heard the music of the spheres,
The song of star to star, but there are sounds
More deep than human joy and human tears,
That Nature uses in her common rounds;
The fall of streams, the cry of winds that strain
The oak, the roaring of the sea's surge, might
Of thunder breaking afar off, or rain
That falls by minutes in the summer night.
These are the voices of earth's secret soul,
Uttering the mystery from which she came.
To him who hears them grief beyond control,


Vashti

She leaned her head upon her hand
And heard the King's decree --
"My lords are feasting in my halls;
Bid Vashti come to me.

"I've shown the treasures of my house,
My costly jewels rare,
But with the glory of her eyes
No rubies can compare.

"Adorn'd and crown'd I'd have her come,
With all her queenly grace,
And, 'mid my lords and mighty men,
Unveil her lovely face.

"Each gem that sparkles in my crown,
Or glitters on my throne,
Grows poor and pale when she appears,


Variation On The Word Sleep

I would like to watch you sleeping,
which may not happen.
I would like to watch you,
sleeping. I would like to sleep
with you, to enter
your sleep as its smooth dark wave
slides over my head

and walk with you through that lucent
wavering forest of bluegreen leaves
with its watery sun & three moons
towards the cave where you must descend,
towards your worst fear

I would like to give you the silver
branch, the small white flower, the one
word that will protect you


Uriel

(In memory of William Vaughn Moody)

I

Uriel, you that in the ageless sun
Sit in the awful silences of light,
Singing of vision hid from human sight, --
Prometheus, beautiful rebellious one!
And you, Deucalion,
For whose blind seed was brought the illuming spark,
Are you not gathered, now his day is done,
Beside the brink of that relentless dark --
The dark where your dear singer's ghost is gone?

II

Imagined beings, who majestic blend


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