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vulnerant omnes
           ultima necat

a covey of dawns[edit]

Leaves of day and moss of dew,
Reeds of wind and scented smiles,
Wings lighting up the world,
Boats laden with sky and sea,
Hunters of sound and sources of colour, 

Scents the echoes of a covey of dawns
Recumbent on the straw of stars,
As the day depends on innocence
The world relies on your pure sight
All my blood courses in its glance.


For each ecstatic instant
We must an anguish pay.
In keen and quivering ratio
To the ecstasy.

For each beloved hour
Sharp pittances of years,
Bitter contested farthings
And coffers heaped with tears.


 Was hilft es, viel von Stimmung reden?
 Dem Zaudernden erscheint sie nie.  
 Gebt ihr euch einmal für Poeten,
 So kommandiert die Poesie.
 Euch ist bekannt, was wir bedürfen,
 Wir wollen stark Getränke schlürfen;
 Nun braut mir unverzüglich dran!
 Was heute nicht geschieht, 
           ist morgen nicht getan,
 Und keinen Tag soll man verpassen,
 Das Mögliche soll der Entschluß
 Beherzt sogleich beim Schopfe fassen,
 Er will es dann nicht fahren lassen
 Und wirket weiter, weil er muß. 
                       -- Faust, Goethe

intentful things[edit]

  The art of losing isn't hard to master;
  so many things seem filled with the intent
  to be lost that their loss is no disaster.  
  I lost two cities, lovely ones. And, vaster,
  some realms I owned, two rivers, a continent.
  I miss them, but it wasn't a disaster.
  --Even losing you (the joking voice, a gesture
  I love) I shan't have lied. It's evident
  art of losing's not too hard to master
  though it may look like (Write it!) like disaster.
                                           --E. Bishop


  Love Song: I And Thou
Nothing is plumb, level or square:
the studs are bowed, the joists
are shaky by nature, no piece fits
any other piece without a gap
or pinch, and bent nails
dance all over the surfacing
like maggots. By Christ
I am no carpenter. I built
the roof for myself, the walls
for myself, the floors
for myself, and got
hung up in it myself. I
danced with a purple thumb
at this house-warming, drunk
with my prime whiskey: rage.

Oh, I spat rage's nails
into the frame-up of my work:
it held. It settled plumb,
level, solid, square and true
for that great moment. Then
it screamed and went on through,
skewing as wrong the other way.
God damned it. This is hell,
but I planned it, I sawed it,
I nailed it, and I
will live in it until it kills me.
I can nail my left palm
to the left-hand crosspiece but
I can't do everything myself.
I need a hand to nail the right,
a help, a love, a you, a wife.
                          --Alan Dugan