Robert Rorabeck

Bronze Star - 2,238 Points (04/10/1978 / Berrien Springs)

For As Long As Men Can Remember - Poem by Robert Rorabeck

I want to describe the flowers that they keep giving
The dead;
It is quite common knowledge to some men: men who work
On boats and float in rivers:
Then they are like the song in her throat when she is lying down
And bathing,
Her nudity the unchaste rises, the abrupt hotels and
The estuaries of alligators and spikenard;
And then she whispers to them how she must be cremated underneath
The sky,
Through the reedy shoulders where the canoes float like
Softly rollerskating freckles;
And she gives them the answers for all the pretty names of the bouquets
That must be placed over her on the solitude of
Unwakeful lines: That she should grow forever in a hoary sheath,
While the flowers of our dictionaries will only
Bloom for as long as men can remember her.

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, April 21, 2010

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