Saturday, July 6, 2013

Observant Scholar, Traveller, Or Uncouth Bearded Figure Squatting in a Cave


Weldon Kees

Curtains drawn back, the door ajar.
All winter long, it seemed, a darkening
Began. But now the moonlight and the odors of the street   
Conspire and combine toward one community.

These are the rooms of Robinson.
Bleached, wan, and colorless this light, as though   
All the blurred daybreaks of the spring
Found an asylum here, perhaps for Robinson alone,

Who sleeps. Were there more music sifted through the floors   
And moonlight of a different kind,
He might awake to hear the news at ten,
Which will be shocking, moderately.

This sleep is from exhaustion, but his old desire   
To die like this has known a lessening.
Now there is only this coldness that he has to wear.   
But not in sleep.—Observant scholar, traveller,

Or uncouth bearded figure squatting in a cave,   
A keen-eyed sniper on the barricades,
A heretic in catacombs, a famed roué,
A beggar on the streets, the confidant of Popes—

All these are Robinson in sleep, who mumbles as he turns,   
“There is something in this madhouse that I symbolize—
This city—nightmare—black—”            
                                                   He wakes in sweat   
To the terrible moonlight and what might be
Silence. It drones like wires far beyond the roofs,   
And the long curtains blow into the room.


  1. Forgive me, I've had multiple chances to run many of these fuckers down on Mass and Nebraska and Wisconsin Avenues and chose the unincarcerated life instead, selfish, hypocritical, and non-revolutionary bastard that I am.

    You're forgive for your prior failures to transgress (FOR FREEDOM!).

    But don't let another opportunity pass by.

  2. my viewpoint is different - i don't think increased personnel turnover in the inside-the-beltway ecosystem would substantially alter the behavior of the incumbents - alternatively, i advocate the policy position often reiterated by richard starkey, who still does jumping jacks during his stage show despite being in his seventies now - in fact, his birthday is tomorrow - "peace and love, brother - peace and love"

    1. I don't think we differ - I've no doubt I splat a Dreanay Itchellmay on Mass between Starbucks and Wagshels another takes her place. Admittedly, that's one of the excuses I used to not splat Dreanay Itchellmay.

      Thanks for the Ingoray - I'll note tomorrow.