Summer 1946 • Vol. VIII No. 3 PoetryJuly 1, 1946 |

A Chorus

  You whom we blessFor the graves that bore us; for the pit of doom—Of our salvation; for the caves of breathShored with the bones of cities: life in which we layHoled fast as foxes in the stony scrub:O mother of us, we are born from you  Once more, once moreTo that unchanging sea that is our death.   You whom we blessFor the waves that bore us—dragons and all deepsShattered beneath our carriers; for doomThat rocked for the nations in the green, salt, rolling grave—That shuffled the nations, driftwood, to their graves:O mother of us, our breath bursts from you  Once more, once moreTo that unchanging air that is our death.   You whom we blessFor the trades of fortune; for the land-long galeThat fanned the embers of their flesh to flameWho stood against us—for the last all-leveling blastThat left the nations ash beneath our flights:Mother, the breath of our dominion breaks  Once more, once moreTo that unchanging fire that is our death.   Yo

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Randall Jarrell was a poet, critic, and literary essayist. From 1937 to 1939 he taught at Kenyon College, where he met John Crowe Ransom and Robert Lowell.

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By Randall Jarrell

  You whom we blessFor the graves that bore us; for the pit of doom—Of our salvation; for the caves of breathShored with the bones of cities: life in which we […]

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