Should one desire his verse to persistent through time and endure the headlong whirl of age, keep it far the self-righteous, the ostentatious, and above all, sentimental.
For more than anything do these affects ground a poem too firmly in the trivial Now with all its impotent cares and impuissant yearns, those which, buried tonight by some morning clamor, will never develop a seed of head to spring a morrow’s come.
‘Tis never the way one intends,
nor should it, working proper.
No matter my want for it,
my hope and pitiable wish:
I will never be able to say what
First Light joyed me to and rapture
stole from quivering lips as
lightning price its impossible apocalypse.
For “every thoughtful word a man a lie”
and every move of heart a cheat;
from chest to spine to skull
does every lovely thing a-stale
and every virgin sight a tail
despite a hero’s try to fool my
soul with some happy otherwise.
Only now have I a want to trust
He that in a youth of lust
built high upon impervious cloud
a faith no seeming storm could bow
until at last the Sun of other sides of
vast made weak the wax my wings
and forced my arms to other clings
that in the quiet of despair
gave food enough to bear
His loss, among other things.
Having thus no choice if choice is one does
take by reins that brutal steed but
grip and hold and be not bold
to think that I, lone rider, know better
than He most ancient of oldest Old.
If ages hence then know my darkened
countenance, be it not was I a lord of pen
or mind but one who tossed aside the reins
and slept upon the coarsey mane my mount as He sprinted across the skies.
Devil walks into bar. Orders drink. Asks Philosopher sitting next to him: “And what do you do?”