Robert Rorabeck

Bronze Star - 2,791 Points (04/10/1978 / Berrien Springs)

What They Know But Not What Is - Poem by Robert Rorabeck

I’ll dress myself up as a gentleman,
And you a society lady,
And buttoned in our new finery, we’ll
Remove ourselves from the shady valley:
No longer vagabonds,
How you got drunk and swam naked
With the regiment,
Firing their cannons and laughing
At you, lascivious;
Now thespians, and you a better wife
With peacock feathers in your hat and tresses,
I will cut my fingers, redmarking each page
Of the sparse script: How we will kiss
Under the spotlight, and drink wine and laugh.
Himalayas will be the backdropp for our
Bedroom, resounding in echoing ram horns,
Risking our pride for the pennies of the crowd;
And after our stage is vacated, the real
Show, extemporaneous, and terse,
Rags with switchblades upon the
Pulsating throats of piggish judges,
Their governors and their society ladies:
Hiccups of uncorked blood, the actual money,
And savoring the anonymity of a better art;
Letting the bourgeoisie applaud, queuing in a
Snooty cavalcade, not a spot of consumption
On the frilly handkerchiefs waved from open windows:
The opal ululations of egg-white jugulars,
See how they will love us, when we match the
Behaviors of their dress, the fineries and
Linens of sweaty ennui; Up on the stage before
All of our society, kiss me now,
But hide the knife which does the real work
Behind your dress,
And share in the churlish thrill, of what we have
Made ourselves, what they know but not what is.

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Comments about What They Know But Not What Is by Robert Rorabeck

  • Jackie Renee (10/2/2008 8:09:00 PM)

    Wow. I only wish I could write something that incredible. Very well done. (Report)Reply

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, October 2, 2008

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