Nonce Song

A form that doesn’t fit a mythic bed
is driving me insane. Before you ask,
the bed is real. I know because
I lie on it like Lascaux. Animal sure. I can provide
verifying links.

Still, you might ask if one of these things
is spectral: insane or driving or me.
“You got me there.” It might be comparable
to talking about the Airedale
cat, a venerable creature
who technically is not,
except in a most minor sense.

But everything is everywhere.

(If we visit, we shall meet cats there,
in the valley (dale) of the river Aire
walking windward, stalking through the yellow hair
of English grasses, in search of rodents fair.)

Wit is polyglot. That’s what Polyphemus
did not know, and got, to his late regret.
I feel the same way about other machines with names.
These autumn words are not stumpers, not at all,
but as babies newly laid. Planked
in their own sudden significance,
they already know all the traffic stops,
like scream and want and Midas stare.

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