John Hollander

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Best Poem of John Hollander

The Mad Potter

Now at the turn of the year this coil of clay
Bites its own tail: a New Year starts to choke
On the old one's ragged end.I bite my tongue
As the end of me--of my rope of stuff and nonsense
(The nonsense held, it was the stuff that broke),
Of bones and light, of levity and crime,
Of reddish clay and hope--still bides its time.

Each of my pots is quite unusable,
Even for contemplating as an object
Of gross unuse.In its own mode of being
Useless, though, each of them remains unique,
Subject to nothing, and themselves unseeing,
Stronger by virtue of what ...

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