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Words

 

We thought a day and a night of steady rain

Was plenty, but it's falling again, downright tireless.

I like it well enough, the mild crackle

In the alleyway, lulling or minatory, either way

Full of the freshness of life.  Much like words.

But words don't fall exactly; they hang there

In the heaven of language, immune to gravity

If not to time, entering your mind

From no direction, travelling no distance at all,

And with rainy persistence tease from the spread earth

So many ravishing scents.  And they recur,

Delicious to nose and tongue.  The word cunt

Often recurs, the word more than the thing,

Perhaps because I came to it so late.

Ocean recurs, perhaps for the same reason, and egg,

Horseman and horse manure, bridal, sap,

And lap with its childish and charming delight in rhyme,

And denial describes its orbit, and blight, and transfigure.

And though I'd argue that those smells of earth

Under the rain's long kneading hands are sweeter

And more ambiguous than any words,

Darkness, one word that does seem to fall,

Falls, and we're back where we started from.

 

Robert Mezey

 

 

From Collected Poems: 1952-1999, University of Arkansas
Press, 2000.  Reprinted by permission of the author.

Background
by Grapholina


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