Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Not From the Vast Ventriloquism

Soundtrack for today's drive, Sea and Cake, Pere Ubu, Sea and Cake, Pere Ubu, continue. Rain and fog through western Maryland, leaves changing, gorgeous. No construction until Ohio, cross the river, whammo, one lane on 470 uphill all the way to rejoin 70, not a contruction worker to be seen. Now in a Mt Vernon hotel that smells like an ashtray even though I'm in a room in the non-smoking wing. Meeting Planet in an hour after her sculpture class, rush to a metal shop to buy her supplies then dinner. Anyway meant to mention that Wallace Stevens was born 133 years ago today. Yes, I've posted Snow Man before, I like it.


Wallace Stevens

One must have a mind of winter
To regard the frost and the boughs
Of the pine-trees crusted with snow;

And have been cold a long time
To behold the junipers shagged with ice,
The spruces rough in the distant glitter

Of the January sun; and not to think
Of any misery in the sound of the wind
In the sound of a few leaves

Which is the sound of the land
Full of the same wind
That is blowing in the same bare place

For the listener, who listens in the snow,
and, nothing himself, beholds
nothing that is not there and the nothing that is.


Wallace Stevens

At the earliest ending of winter,
In March, a scrawny cry from outside
Seemed like a sound in his mind.

He knew that he heard it,
A bird's cry at daylight or before,
In the early March wind.

The sun was rising at six,
No longer a battered panache above snow...
It would have been outside.

It was not from the vast ventriloquism
Of sleep's faded papier mache...
The sun was coming from outside.

That scrawny cry - it was
A chorister whose c proceeded the choir.
It was part of the colossal sun,

Surrounded by it's choral rings,
Still far away. It was like
A new knowledge of reality.