O.

O
the poets have always preceded,
as Mallarmé preceded Cézanne,
neck and neck that was no
privilege, sweet and forgotten

seated in chairs, the afternoon
marches along with the shadows
which are not bougainvillaea but
northern I have always loved

shadows as long as they were northern
and moved gently west like the
crack-up of books, their spines
tingling with notes and stuffing

most people remember the gardens
with cement flowers and the
house going straight up like
solidified swimming-pools or lilies

when you get to the top which
they once called widow’s walk,
you wait in nothing but your garden
hat, beautifully otherwise naked

for the wind-swept sea and the dying
sweetness or womb, declaring the completion
of philosophy or the completion of
the human-being in some/a history

awash among silver trees, aspens,
pounded, whispering ‘my foos won’t
moos’ or some other difficult
disappearance of words which were
preliminary notions, laundry of that lovely
absurd summer we wanted so
desperately the moss was 6 inches
deep and if you put a cigarette
out in it, the fire would be
6 inches deep in minutes,
when the fire spreads, the trees
totter and their statues wait
in your thought, exactly numerous
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