The Blind Man

 [Poetry], Unimagined Things  Comments Off on The Blind Man
Aug 272011
 

Because I am blind and walk agape
And beat out rough rhythm with my stick
Like the fascination of the sea
I can create, as in Yeats' dream,
Man in the soul of God
And batter out a place 
Among twilit immensities
To dwell in that contempt,
Giving bitterness a face.
    Stick, stick, stick, stick.

Because I am a blind old man
And came blindly howling hence
To fumble with a stick, I demand,
Passion of my decrepitude unsung,
A gallery where bright heroes hung
Stand each for that passion
That pitched them to their deaths;
And I demand it built
Behind the eye and in the heart
Of God and his burning son;
All glory in the uneaten bud.
    Stick, stick, stick, stick.

I have heard on the walks and ways
That give my confession to a stone
That some with bitter inward breaths
And some in necessity of fashion
Live slave to what words have wrung
Out of man's contemptible mash
And nail to each star each part,
As if misery made flesh were all.
    Stick, stick, stick, stick.

I can see because I am blind
How each tiresome human vine
In eyeless arrogance of its kind
Sprouts like a worm in its own food,
Divine soul all lumped with mud.
Each blind root heaves its back to the sun
In perilous ignorance of its own blood.
    Stick, stick, stick, stick.

Although I am blind and cannot see
Bleak wreckage of the dark tide,
Rank human ecstasies and defeats,
I know what mysteries abide
And carve these rude words upon my stick:
We must feed what we beget;
Imagination shall provide
Some unsought froth as yet, rank spillage
Of the glittering sublime.
    Stick, stick, stick, stick.

Dead

 [Poetry], Unimagined Things  Comments Off on Dead
Aug 272011
 

What has life's bitter disappointment brought
Laid in a narrow, breathless bed?
Shall we curse all our drunken, muddy lot
Lain with long bones of the dead?

At the end of a rifle or parting stream
Pursued by a pursuing dream
Man wakes up to find his enemies again,
The end of dreams, and all friends dead.

What stays hid in the marrow there,
Thrust deep underground?
Things purposed in the unpurposed air
Die when those men are dead.

Whether father or brother still pursue
Their work, or others' work, I do not know;
I read it on a narrow, upright stone
Cast by the long bones of the dead.

Fathers sacrifice long-loving sons
To a nameless, breathless bed;
Stand we under an island sun
Or lie with long bones of the dead?

Dead

 [Poetry], Constellations in December  Comments Off on Dead
Aug 262011
 
 
What has life's bitter disappointment brought 
Laid in a narrow, breathless bed? 
Shall we curse all our drunken, muddy lot 
Lain with long bones of the dead? 
 
At the end of a rifle or parting stream 
Pursued by a pursuing dream 
Man wakes up to find his enemies again, 
The end of dreams, and all friends dead. 
 
What stays hid in the marrow there, 
Thrust deep underground? 
Things purposed in the unpurposed air 
Die when those men are dead. 
 
Whether father or brother still pursue 
Their work, or others' work, I do not know; 
I read it on a narrow, upright stone 
Cast by the long bones of the dead. 
 
Fathers sacrifice long-loving sons 
To a nameless, breathless bed; 
Stand we under an island sun 
Or lie with long bones of the dead?