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More poems by David WagonerDavid Wagoner | Print this page.Print | View and Write CommentsComments | Books by David WagonerBooks by David Wagoner

Wallace Stevens On His Way To Work

David Wagoner

He would leave early and walk slowly
     As if balancing books
          On the way to school, already expecting
To be tardy once again and heavy
     With numbers, the unfashionably rounded
          Toes of his shoes invisible beyond
The slope of his corporation. He would pause
     At his favorite fundamentally sound
          Park bench, which had been the birthplace
Of paeans and ruminations on other mornings,
     And would turn his back to it, having gauged the distance
          Between his knees and the edge of the hardwood
Almost invariably unoccupied
     At this enlightened hour by the bums of nighttime
          (For whom the owlish eye of the moon
Had been closed by daylight), and would give himself wholly over
     Backwards and trustingly downwards
          And be well seated there. He would remove
From his sinister jacket pocket a postcard
     And touch it and retouch it with the point
          Of the fountain he produced at his fingertips
And fill it with his never-before-uttered
     Runes and obbligatos and pellucidly cryptic
          Duets from private pageants, from broken ends
Of fandangos with the amoeba chaos chaos
     Couchant and rampant. Then he would rise
          With an effort as heartfelt as a decision
To get out of bed on Sunday and carefully
     Relocate his center of gravity
          Above and beyond an imaginary axis
Between his feet and carry the good news
     Along the path and the sidewalk, well on his way
          To readjusting the business of the earth.

Added: 29 Aug 2001 | Last Read: 17 Jan 2019 8:51 AM | Viewed: 6743 times

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URL: http://plagiarist.com/poetry/502/ | Viewed on 17 January 2019.
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