Summer 1996 • Vol. XVIII No. 3/4 PoetryJuly 1, 1996 |

Refreshed Apollo

We march lamely, reliably through the blowzy nightgaining only one tomorrow at a time, no durable good. The beautiful swan froths its feathers and in the high plateaus wildflowers release perfume from velvet glands. Everything I have ever told you was under the threat of death. I wore only the mask of life like a bear denned up under snow. The cool fur. O the fur like very dense mesh to strainimpurities from sleep and splay the first warm wind.Such stamina, such strength!—as when the old rose garden welcomes the blare of summer, presses its petals in August's envelope like letters from some hinterland where the language is touch. Like the jetty built to protect the swimmerand the shore, every god is a form of fear. Listen: at last even his songis nothing more than an ornamentfor the stillness.

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