Treasure Island

Denise Levertov

(24 October 1923 – 20 December 1997 / Ilford, Essex)

Contraband


The tree of knowledge was the tree of reason.
That's why the taste of it
drove us from Eden. That fruit
was meant to be dried and milled to a fine powder
for use a pinch at a time, a condiment.
God had probably planned to tell us later
about this new pleasure.
We stuffed our mouths full of it,
gorged on but and if and how and again
but, knowing no better.
It's toxic in large quantities; fumes
swirled in our heads and around us
to form a dense cloud that hardened to steel,
a wall between us and God, Who was Paradise.
Not that God is unreasonable – but reason
in such excess was tyranny
and locked us into its own limits, a polished cell
reflecting our own faces. God lives
on the other side of that mirror,
but through the slit where the barrier doesn't
quite touch ground, manages still
to squeeze in – as filtered light,
splinters of fire, a strain of music heard
then lost, then heard again.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read poems about / on: mirror, tree, music, god, fire, lost, light, time

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (Contraband by Denise Levertov )

Enter the verification code :

Read all 1 comments »

Top Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  9. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
    Maya Angelou
  10. A Dream Within A Dream
    Edgar Allan Poe

PoemHunter.com Updates

New Poems

  1. The person I've become...., Liliana lopez
  2. *VIII*- To Love, Leslie Guylee Cron
  3. My cage..., Liliana lopez
  4. Prayer To My Ancestors, Tony Adah
  5. You're Making This Too Easy, Lawrence S. Pertillar
  6. I need you., Tyler Anhorn
  7. Cosmic soul., Gangadharan nair Pulingat..
  8. What's up, dude..., veeraiyah subbulakshmi
  9. Automatic Weaponry...And Kids….Ain't Chi.., James B. Earley
  10. I'll pray you never run away, Mark Heathcote

Poem of the Day

poet Robert Burns

When biting Boreas, fell and doure,
Sharp shivers thro' the leafless bow'r;
When Phoebus gies a short-liv'd glow'r,
Far south the lift,
...... Read complete »

 

Modern Poem

poet Jessie Pope

 
[Hata Bildir]