Spring 1961 • Vol. XXIII No. 2 PoetryApril 1, 1961 |

Arabian Night

(The crow, after many adventures, returns to the Ark on Ararat.) I should know this place, these women talking here Between a dinner and the common goodnight, Know their stories of the past: sorrows, Children, the (lead; the same domestic tales, yes! Sisters, mother, aunt, in the glowing room, Around the white table—just as it was! O genies of familiar memory, who, Convened, becalmed, by nearness and the night, Rub from a little boy's fierce pride or impudence, Or cousin's guile, or uncles' merriment —So innocent, so unredeemed!—A steady, timid spell against the night. And I who sit like night at the window And cannot enter except I become a child—O that light has gone, they will not conjure him, Not for all their burnished hearts' lamp! He, in other lands, striving in chains, builds But cannot grow; wherefore I've come in his stead. For here one is, Time's prosaic Sinbad Returned from dull adventures in the years, Ancient changeling, impostor of a life, —His treas

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