Fall 1986 • Vol. VIII No. 4 A Poem |

Oedipus

Once he had unriddled the Sphinxshe was finished, I guess,though not bodily, not the powerfulthighs, the lion-thighsof the women … So then it was the fathers.Some cities got built. Some nights nowthe submarines move in close, theirhuge stethoscopes—east, west—and all they find is a lot of people,sleeping.    Gods, youhave tricked us, I think. Each of ushalf, and too many … Though my roomis wonderfully quiet. The cat isblack, Egyptian and clever, I look out at the stars, yellowas her eyes, the avenuesof the moon I cannot name, moon that has beena warrior, a woman—softernow, looking down at the king who perhaps looks up for the last time …so that thisshimmeringis what he will always see; thenstumbling across the stonestill his feet are torn, thinkingnow he will rest,will hardly move; he will be happy.Like an olive tree, or a great tortoise.

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Once he had unriddled the Sphinxshe was finished, I guess,though not bodily, not the powerfulthighs, the lion-thighsof the women … So then it was the fathers.Some cities got built. Some […]

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