Poems, 1947-1961

Poems, 1947-1961

Poems, 1947-1961

Poems, 1947-1961

Excerpt

They did not know this face
Where the chin rested on the sunken breastbone,
So changed it was, emptied, rinsed out and dried,
And for some future purpose put aside.
Expecting torment, they were much perplexed.

His world had gone
And he sat isolated, foul and flyblown,
Without a world, with nothing but a mind
Staggered to silence since it could not find
Language to utter its amazing text.

For where was Job?
In some strange state, unknown and yet well-known,
A mask that stared hollowly in God's breath,
Mind that perceived the irrelevance of death,
And the astonished heart unmoved, unvexed.

They did not see his soul
Perched like a bird upon the broken hearthstone,
Piping incessantly above the ashes
What next what next what next what next what next . . .

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