A bat flew into my room... and I recoiled,
My arms shielding my head instinctively.
Blind, winged, blundering, mole,
It clung by a sliver of claw to a far corner.
Vile stain of a grave umbrella!
Repulsive! A gibbet-rag — inert, inert and ugly;
A sack of foulness. Sudden, a searching moonbeam
Picked it out. Two leaden flames its ears,
Perfectly formed. The furry beat of its heart,
A feather on a pagoda, pattering soft as rain.
Poor pipistrelle, in your pauper's membrane,
Wafer-thin as gauze... the huddled wings
Coiffing the small collapse of your
Smokey, ash-bud face...
Lean monk in perpetual Lent,
Your brothers are swooping, fat,
In moon-milk lappings of flight!
Hermit, your dim, round eyes
Are begging bowls of beads. I cannot tell,
As you lamprey-cling to your ache in the niche of the night,
If you are a Jinn, a Jonah, malignant troglodyte, —
Kaleidoscope of feeling, —
A peeling, shriven sprite,
Or a hurt, gone quiet, healing.
sheena blackhall's Other Poems
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(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
(28 November 1757 – 12 August 1827)
Edna St. Vincent Millay
(22 February 1892 – 19 October 1950)
(27 October 1914 – 9 November 1953)
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