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Anxious gatekeeping

Analogous to nervous cluelessness is something we might call “anxious gatekeeping.”   This is desire to police the borders of poetry, or of...

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

While in the Harvard library

The other day in the Harvard library I discovered this unpublished poem by a major American modernist. This is the first time it is being published:

your sweestest erasure directs me to a place I have never been;

small rainhands of dew springtime me again as I have never been done

among which; weeds; slightest kisses among; your gestures lilac

and rose me; however you might do; it is never the same syntax;



but then, the rude capitals; sorrowful derelicts rebuke

your enormous tenderness; pay them no mind, though

everyday teardrops drop dew in your facelpalm, but

that is enough; nothing ever was as sweet as your tinyness;



enough but still, in stillness of rebuttal; pay them no heart;

they have never known directness as direct as thou art;

blinking you might have missed it; how tender the reality seems



under snow; snowdrifts of salt. I’d love to stay and explain

but hours grow late; later than lates have latented.

Only the snarks complain. You and I not.

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