Winter 1955 • Vol. XVII No. 1 Poetry |

Malentendu

Well, you have left me, and without a word, Between two tides, the high and moaning tide Under these cliffs of midnight skies inflamed And the bleak morning tide of skies no bird Will try, and now these months no beating wings Have taken shape for eyes upon the murk And fog of blank horizons, and no beak Green message to my steady lookout brings. What word of all my faithful measured words Put you to flight, what gesture of these handsStiffened with palsy, or flicker of these eyes As live as snakes among the deadening shards Of shriveled flesh like sagging eaves above, Made havoc, I shall never seek to learn, Since what is tangled once never comes straight And right words after wrong words darken fate. That I'm misread infallibly will burn Through vein and gut so long as memory holds, But under strongest glass no single flaw Being discoverable, you being the same, And I the same, there is nothing real lost. The heart is unattained. Only the head Haunted by tediou

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