Sunday, November 2, 2014

The Descent of Winter: 11/2

Marie Vassilieff, The Dance / A Cubist Portrait


The earth and the sky were very close
When the sun rose it rose in his heart
It bathed the red cold world of
the dawn so that the chill was his own
The mists were sleep and sleep began
to fade from his eyes, below him in the
garden a few flowers were lying forward
on the intense green grass where
in the opalescent shadows oak leaves
were pressed down hard upon it in patches
by the night rain. There were no cities
between him and his desires
his hatreds and his loves were without walls
without rooms, without elevators
without files, delays of veiled murderers
muffled thieves, the tailings of
tedious, dead pavements, the walls
against desire save only for him who can pay
high, there were no cities——he was
without money——

                Cities had faded richly
into foreign countries, stolen from Russia——
the richness of her cities——

Scattered wealth was close to his heart
he felt it uncertainly beating at
that moment in his wrists, scattered
wealth——but there was not much at hand

Cities are full of light, fine clothes
delicacies for the table, variety,
novelty——fashion: all spent for this.
Never to be like that again:
the frame that was. It tickled his
imagination. But it passed in a rising calm

Tan dar a dei! Tan dar a dei!

He was singing. Two miserable peasants
very lazy and foolish
seemed to have walked out from his own
feet and were walking away with wooden rakes
under the six foot nearly bare poplars, up the hill

There go my feet.

He stood still in the window forgetting
to shave——

The very old past was refound
redirected. It had wandered into himself
The world was himself, these were
his own eyes that were seeing, his own mind
that was straining to comprehend, his own
hands that would be touching other hands
They were his own!
His own, feeble, uncertain. He would go
out to pick herbs, he graduate of
the old university. He would go out
and ask that old woman, in the little
village by the lake, to show him wild
ginger. He himself would not know the plant.

A horse was stepping up the dirt road
under his window

He decided not to shave. Like those two
that he knew now, as he had never
known them formerly. A city, fashion
had been between——

Nothing between now.

He would go to the soviet unshaven. This
was the day——and listen. Listen. That
was all he did, listen to them, weigh
for them. He was turning into a
a pair of scales, the scales in the

  But closer, he was himself
the scales. The local soviet. They could
weigh. If it was not too late. He felt
uncertain many days. But all were uncertain
together and he must weigh for them out
of himself.

  He took a small pair of scissors
from the shelf and clipped his nails
carefully. He himself served the fire.

We have cut out the cancer but
who knows? perhaps the patient will die.
The patient is anybody, anything
worthless that I desire, my hands
to have it——instead of the feeling
that there is a piece of glazed paper
between me and the paper——invisible
but tough running through the legal
processes of possession——a city, that
we could possess——

  It's in art, it's in
the French school.

  What we lacked was
everything. It is the middle of
everything. Not to have.

  We have little now but
we have that. We are convalescents. Very
feeble. Our hands shake. We need a
transfusion. No one will give it to us,
they are afraid of infection. I do not
blame them. We have paid heavily. But we
have gotten——touch. The eyes and the ears
down on it. Close.



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