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American Beauty Analysis

Author: poem of Louis McKee Type: poem Views: 15

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The perfect American Beauty Rose,

is it diminished

by the slag heaps on Rt. 11, just west

of Scranton, or by the dark cloud

that seems to have settled an inch or so

beneath the surface of Lake Naomi,

or even the swell of soot that hangs

like a troubling thought over the town

on the other side of the river?  

Is the rose there any less beautiful?  

Or this woman here; right now

she is standing in the impatient way

women have, a hip thrust out,

a shoulder let low?  She is casual

this Sunday morning, in jeans

and a simple top, and she stands

at the top of the hill holding a cigarette

and a leash, waiting for her dog to return.  

You'll have to take my word for this:

she is as lovely as any rose

you'll ever find on those long walks you take

into the mountains, and nothing about her

is diminished by the bombs that are falling

this very moment on Afghanistan, the lies

packed tight and neat into cartons

and stacked with the rest in basements,

warehouses and storage rentals

throughout Washington, the three point shot

dropping like a rock short of the basket

in the final seconds of an important moment

in someone's life.  In fact, it is just the opposite:

the grays around us fade—not reduced, no,

nor chased away—but lost to the flush

beauty of the red rose, of the women,

in a moment appreciated.

Anonymous submission.


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