it is addressed thusly:

An ode.
it reads:
Of he, royalty's conquering son
Bright-faced, prince of cavalry
His dragoons ride with the sound of the gun
And brooks he no base rivalry;
Flames burst forth from tower to tower
His foes must shrink, their faces glower
Announcing his ride from the waiting sea
In this the bright and conquering hour;

He enters the city, though not his yet
But all he sees comes to his hand
Estates and clans will fill his net
Sparse it is, set across the land;
But does no miracles to deceive
He does not need men to believe
For sight is sufficient to understand
Raised chin, sharp eye, laurel wreath;

Usurper they say, who clutch the crown
And wear it not, for they fear the wind
Which bears a bruised reed to the ground
Considering but how he must have sinned
Who bears upon their castles dim
From the plain unto the ocean's rim
But the Duke instead, he merely grinned
For all of these shall come to him.



it is addressed thusly:

An ode.
it reads:
Terror is something like power;
For in power there is terror indeed;
And fear where strength does tower;
For strength makes fear exceed;
But terror is not power, nor is fear
A difficult thing for some to hear
For God is great, and without need
His peace and dread draw near;

She loves the fearful things in truth
For only strength gives security;
And fear its sign, and even ruth
Is the seal of its magnanimity;
We do not like to be terrorized
A difficult thing some have realized;
For woman senses power and purity
Awesome when it is exercised;

Might is seen in great sacrifice
And true sacrifice needs strength
Giving all has both art and artifice
And art is but giving at length;
The king is such an object of fear
A difficult cross for man to bear
But his giving is then giving thanks--
And his art is powerful, terrible, fair.


Sailing to Naples

it is addressed thusly:

for Tom Barghest.
it reads:
Where the young sit quietly, alone
The aged laugh, their deck chairs
Sit on layer upon layer of stone
Unlost anymore in worldly cares
Add to the rubble and wreck
A fragment of immemorial liturgy
Bottle by bottle tossed off-deck
Trash on trash by the lapping sea;

They think to live forever perhaps
The young alone seem to believe
And silent, watch each wave collapse
That they might live on, disease
Captures middle age with trash
But the patients suffer little for ill
Walk among graffiti, bat not a lash
Knowing this the country of the old, still.
a post-script is here written:
open letter more historical anomalies


Zombie Nation

it is addressed thusly:

A vision.
it reads:
It is well known of the fly
That he must seek his food
His is not to question why
Nor to know of ill or good
The dead as well we know
Even walking to and fro
Have but this single mood--
And no more hope nor grow;

When the rot at first sets in
The smell must flies attract
But of those dead just within
Was the living they had attacked;
America, the zombified
Should be quite well over-flied--
But no flies their mien detract
As their drug is formaldehyde.
a postscript is here written:
a pass-word:
america zombie nation


The Onion

it is addressed thusly:

An ode.
it reads:
The world is an onion, quite round
Pointed atop, of many rinds
With string-like fiber still bound
As common as anyone finds;
Has no center, except where it grows
Which is as any gardener knows
Another onion, and smaller minds
From this several things suppose;

No center have things, themselves beside
Or so it seems, but you realize
That the thing itself is not identified
But in paradox, and how precise
Is our knowledge of the whole
Not ever knowing it in full
But of what it is we still are wise
When it from the ground we pull;

I pulled a strange onion yesterday
It was shaped almost just as a man
I buried it again, and said, "anyway
Even onions do what they can."
I repented of this and dug it aright
Measured, weighed, and then that night
Cut it in two; but did not understand
What was written inside, by candle-light.

I buried them in the garden then;
Both parts, the left, the right
Strange that some inscription within
Grown-over, sometime passed out of sight;
The wind blows - the November rain
Each yet grows, the one and the twain
Each onion you see, has another inside
Order like Spring returns again.
a postscript is here written:
a pass-word:
alien acid beast


Tanuki Song

it is addressed thusly:

A song.
it reads:
Politicians are wolves. Imagine --
The domestic dog, in his glory
He who brought himself in
Or so that is his story --
The Canid has more variation
Some vulpine, some lupine
To each his proper station
And each his genetic line;
Tanuki! The racoon-dog
What are you, and why yet
Do you stare, dumb as a log
But I know, not as innocent?
Absent-minded and wise
Always unknowing we suppose
Teeth grip like a vise
Thus we know that he knows;
For hunting, some dogs were bred
For fighting, for grabbing bulls
At least they are what we said
They really do find the voles;
A racoon-dog though, deep down
I reckon it is wolf enough
Though it seem a bit of a clown
In its professorial ruff;
Though it wears a funny mask
It too can form packs
And though one might ask
Does not cease in its attacks;
Here now, it is kept as a pet
Allowed to hunt at night
A public policy - do not fret
It hasn't so much might;
I wonder at that vesperal sound
Chill of night, the world revolves
Many eyes in the night I found--
But as you know, politicians are wolves.