Summer 1960 • Vol. XXII No. 3 PoetryJuly 1, 1960 |

Abelard Remembering

(A fragment from a longer poem.)             And praise therefore the woman, Beauty as prime experience, breaking. Praise Her hair flowing; saying of its softnesses That candlelights were sieved to find them, saying Its odor clung in thought like old forenoons Of Spanish oranges lain in the sun, and saying Its color spilled like cedarhearts split out At some woodcutter's clearing; yes, so flowing, Spilling, consuming every sense, and I Only a burning face upon her knees. Her hands were principles of song. Her mouth In smiling moved as intricacies of wind On an apple bough, in sadness lay like a killed Finch, in love was candy. Her voice was a plum. Her body was so prompt, so grave, so tempered, As for lute-playing, so erudite in half-dreamt Secrecies, so genial in every coign And crown of touchsomeness, so featly true—Philosophies in each soft inch of her!—That I despised my own, the ill-done brute, Jagged, obscene. Yet put him to good work, Such a

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