“Im Quell deiner Augen

erwürgt ein Gehenkter den Strang.”
Paul Celan

Sunday, May 16, 2021


A head like the Hermes of Praxiteles, he stands
At the threshold of some epiphany –
Life does not pity the dead, but the bones
Of the dead still endure life’s surfeit.

Behind him the Acropolis bakes in the sun,
Its tawny stuccos blister, its marble pillars
Turn to glass near the Temple of Victory,
And Phoebus’ wheel is running rimless.

The Caryatids of the Parthenon lift their stony gaze,
Loyal limbs raise the arched roof off his dreams,
And he imagines himself hoisted there and brazen,
Caparisoned in robes of hammered gold.