Whole strata of rounded stones torn asunder,
& sunk, & new hills arose.
& process thereof.
If the aversion
of God's face is confusion, his fury’s
the utter absorption of the creature.
Reader, I sat & watched the boat approach.
Reader, solemnity, an instance of this,
for what has not drown’d remains unmixt –
Of movement & measure,
Of wave, / displacement
& what steady star, resolute –
a wake descries what is unstaved.
O, vagary – O, indiscretion –
we are poor & we are mingled together.
An inauspicious beginning:
I am not ungrateful.
& as for Truth –
you expect too much from poems –
beauty & presuppositionlessness,
& the infinite space between the two. (v.i.)
For an immaterial thing, memory
’s an impertinent particular,
& persistent, fashioning I’s from then’s
as one twists yarns into twine –
straitened between the mountains and the sea,
we trod the fractured angles of upturned ice.
O stop-gap, O emulous positum,
this will not fail to lack sincerity,
but earnestly, as if I loved you.
there are limits to credulity
(I’d a different beginning in mind, viz.
& so I, having been so desirous,
something something nautical.
a ship in all its specificity,
the sails close aft, by three great hawsers moored,
the sea & its attendant gravitas.)
this cannot fail to be a poem
however botched & o’erweening –
neither sextant nor its guiding star,
neither compass nor the hand that holds it–
& whence this unruly supplement.
& so saved our selves and the noble shippe also
which all we marryners aborde thought
coolde not possybelly but have been broken in sunder.