Adam Ash

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Thursday, December 29, 2005

Poem of the week: Almeder

You'll like this poem if you know anything about or by the New England poet Robert Lowell. If you don't, you won't.

Postmortem for Lowell, Massachusetts -- by Melanie Almeder

Lowell’s gone ash can, gone soot, gone hybrid
of lilac and factory and lapsed Catholic.
Leaves, the disoriented speak of trees;
with a little wind, they talk the shuffle, the sweep.
At night strange resemblances among teeth and grave stones:
We’ve got heads full of relatives
while the wind trills the silver ash leaves.

In the story of the city,
in the old woman’s grin back
at the wind and blue sky, teeth are the spokesmen
of bone, would have, if they could have, told
the one about skeleton where skin
makes off with the crows, wind pilfers sockets,
and later, much later, the industry of souls.


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