Only a Dreaded Scene at a Party
I declare today that I am Poetry.
I am Spenser’s load and Eliot’s entrails—
Worth more than a penny.
And I declare today that I am to be Understood:
For as I am Poetry, then I am opaque:
And as for my being opaque, I can be seen
Tru’n’thru’n’all the rest.
Today, England is a breathing, walking state
Of affairs; and to be a state of affairs, you must
Also be reachable and touchable.
So thus I must be “England.” That’s common sense.
I am Poetry and England; and this must b empirikal:—
O, cherished birthday bash, this age of snow’s glow!
Come down, o beauteous cherub, o kind clown
Of bared masque and childish laugh! Keep my
Calf below, in a cellar not unlike Shath’s; for I
Am the One in Blue— and one is, ever, two—
(Unless one is done with all wrath and cud to chew)
—So let’s call it a day and seek a joy much less of excess—
And should not just I and thee make a play of act of one:
Two parts, two roles, together again!,
Chuckling like fools in a rancid tavern
And undoing idiocy for the laughs of good old Jack!
AM I UNDERSTOOD?
—What’s he saying?
—I don’t know, I can’t hear him