Monday, March 29, 2010

poem || Jeff Harrison

That Charioteer Air

white page's cipher's got a shot at muddy shapes
murmurs — which nymph has that charioteer air?
lightly, but still, laurel thickens Wormswork's mane
when a rose's faintly heard there's class fear, flowers
when will their echo break — wait, Wormswork —
the horrid will itself break on the ears of that
same papery listener I've alluded to so many times
that white-handed & deep-recessed Mr. Hole
up in their rumblings he hears nothing of Long Empire
it's a lark by degrees, & all-out cheek when he stops
listening & pipes up with "Me nightingales? No, just,
at most, apples hymning — just enough where it
couldn't matter if I talk over it now, & all the while
you were looking — writing — of roses & company"
oh what my portrayal blights, & what are my pieces,
really? shapes in the eyes, or in soft nonfictional ears?
mathematics that take no account mountains stand,
there's noise there too, whether numbers are uttered
or not, the rose overwhelms your listen, mine too, else
I wouldn't mention it, of all the players one must be
practical, aside from a fictional character that may as well
be the rose for all the good it helps Ariadne's thread
awfully the dark in fiction, awfully sunbeams & the like,
awfully the allusions, shut or flooded, where what all the cipher
comes down to is forgetfulness, else you think red is hot
& blue feels cool eternally, green verse breezy sweet where
awfully the Wormswork, the Virginia, the rosy Mr. Hole,
awfully they who continually play at being floatings mid-air

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