Sunday, September 20, 2009

This earthly afterlife

The voice as undiluted as ever, un-

mixed with the water of time, pure wine this

earthly afterlife -- what believers

mean by the space between baptism and

death, when the body's warm of a midsummer's

dream (the teeming crowds and footlights, the

edges of seats, the applause, the repeats; the

flowers you've picked swan-colored, the note hand-

written, to dawn consecrated, you're smitten and

waited, standing, for her call at the curtain), when

all that's created is certain of being kept

dear, of becoming -- before that endless

night is slept, the voice as clear as

breathless evening --, in its coming-to-be, the

fullness of is: the loving of pouring

out, of drinking in, of thinking --

this the antidote to doubt -- how

better it is to have "slumbered here

while these visions did appear", and

nodded -- blissful mystery -- during the play.

(Edited and transcribed 20 September 2009, begun in smallest kernel -- the title -- 14 September 2009. I owe the rest of the poem to four interlocutors, one the quoted author, one a noted scholar, one an amazing actress, one an amazed (like Theaetetus) philologist. I think that even those still living have never met each other, but I imagine that they -- and I -- would enjoy the conversation. In its stead, the poem.)

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