Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Homage to Mr Pound

victory sweetened not your crimes
                                             you lived enough lives to witness 
                                 the betrayal of beauty
which was difficult
                                                                   as you said

it was a young blood that flowed in you
                                                         quick hot and generous
daring the god to flare in the laurel tree
                                   bitten by barbed wire

or perpetually astonished
                                             a young girl in a white dress
                                  alighting on a platform
             between the hiss and groan of trains –

you were anything but Roman
                                             unparalleled despiser of your sex
lumpen devourer of divinities
                       with an ear tuned to vaporous divisions
sadness and losses turning in the pyre 
            to the ash of words                                            no wonder
your prophecies twisted  - you understood 
                        money better than souls - still
your myth staggers on without you
                                                                   curling over your ears
            at the jewelled tables where you whet
                                  your fabulous appetites
or limp and dark in a filthy battlefield
            unyielding as a woman
                                              hefting her mangled boy in her arms 
             and the answer sticks its tail into its mouth
                                    and rolls towards you like a tank on fire
                        and behind it billow scorched acres of wheat
                        and the roasted nightingale
                                              silenced at last
                        and the blackened husks of men
                        and the broken pillars................................................

master of play!
                       incorrigible wastrel!
                                             your hatreds were magnificent
              still they steam rankly
over the meek ordure of your milk-livered sons
                      and your kisses blossom like weeds
                                  delivering lips out of their lips and so on
where only the strays now graze
                                 (their eyes flooded and blind with love)  
                                                       the sundry despairs of civilisation 
printing your forehead
                                    a poem's insistent monotone
beating your ears like a huge sad moth
                       wonkily eyeing the moon

                                                                                 obscene errata
                      downfallen like a mule in a well
                                            a true poet’s death

as you said


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