Alfred Kreymborg

(1883-1966 / United States)

Introducing Dorothy - Poem by Alfred Kreymborg

1. Mender

ARE there any
as tender
as the day
with the night
in its arms
or the night
with the day?
If there is
will you send her?

2. Her Eyes

Her eyes hold black whips --
dart of a whip
lashing, nay, flicking,
nay, merely caressing
the hide of a heart,
and a broncho tears through canyons --
walls reverberating,
sluggish streams
shaken to rapids and torrents,
storm destroying
silence and solitude!
Her eyes throw black lariats,
one for his head,
one for his heels,
and the beast lies vanquished --
walls all still,
streams all still,
except for a tarn,
or is it a pool,
or is it a whirlpool
twitching with memory?

3. Her Hair

Her hair is a tent
held down by two pegs --
ears, very likely --
where two gipsies --
eyes, dull folk call them --
read your soul away:
one promising something,
the other stealing it.
If the pegs would let go
and the tent blow away, drop away,
like a wig or a nest --
you'd escape
paying coin
to gipsies --
maybe --

4. Her Hands

Blue veins
of morning glories
blue veins
of clouds
bring deep-toned silence
after a storm.
White horns
of morning glories
white flutes
of clouds --
sextettes hold silence and
cup it for aye.
Could I
blow morning glories
could I
lip clouds
I'd sound the silence
her hands bring to me.
Had I
the yester sun
had I
the morrow's --
brush them like cymbals,
I'd then sound the noise.

5. Her Body

Her body gleams
like an altar candle
white in the dark,
and modulates
to voluptuous bronze,
bronze of a sea
under the flame.

6. Others

There is too
the love of her
through others'
love of her.

There is too
the love of her
through others'
love of her
love of me.

There is even
the love of her
though others'
love of her
be only
love of my
love of her.

7. Three

I and my
lovely lady
sit down
where we can see each other
and chat about
the lovely lady
I and my
lovely lady

8. Ilusions

This tree,
whose top flirted with the sky,
whose branches dared the uttermost east and west,
whose roots penetrated China,
whose leaves were elves --

My companion is gone,
is less than a shrub.

9. Image

Showing her immortal --
it's mine to do
but I can't.
Shaping her as she is,
a thing to
turn a glance
to an eternity --
it's there,
I can see it
but I can't say it.

If one could transcribe
some infinitesimal phase
of the trillion-starred endowment
which comes tumbling
out of simply trying to look at her,
or out of catching a glance,
slyly pointed,
trying to look at me,
stirring a trillion-starred emotion
vibrating like a bell
across endless tides of endless seas --
I'd do it
but I can't.

I love her so much
I can't do anything else.

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, April 22, 2010

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