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LOWELL, Amy



The Taxi


When I go away from you
The world beats dead
Like a slackened drum.
I call out for you against the jutted stars
And shout into the ridges of the wind.

Streets coming fast,
One after the other,
Wedge you away from me,
And the lamps of the city prick my eyes
So that I can no longer see your face.
Why should I leave you,
To wound myself upon the sharp edges of the night?



Night Clouds


The white mares of the moon rush along the sky

Beating their golden hoofs upon the glass heavens;

The white mares of the moon are all standing on their hind legs

Pawing at the green porcelain doors of the remote heavens

Fly, Mares!

Strain your utmost

Scatter the milky dust of stars,

Or the tiger sun will leap upon you and destroy you

With one lick of his vermilion tongue.


Crépuscule du Matin


All night I wrestled with a memory

Which knocked insurgent at the gates of thought.

The crumbled wreck of years behind has wrought

Its disillusion; now I only cry

For peace, for power to forget the lie

Which hope too long has whispered. So I sought

The sleep which would not come, and night was fraught

With old emotions weeping silently.

I heard your voice again, and knew the things

Which you had promised proved an empty vaunt.

I felt your clinging hands while night's broad wings

Cherished our love in darkness. From the lawn

A sudden, quivering birdnote, like a taunt.

My arms held nothing but the empty dawn.