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I Won, You Lost Analysis



Author: poem of Philip Levine Type: poem Views: 11

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The last of day gathers

in the yellow parlor

and drifts like fine dust

across the face of

the gilt-framed mirror

I ofien prayed to.

An old man's room

without him, a room I

came back to again

and again to steal

cigarettes and loose change,

to open cans of sardines,

to break open crackers

and share what he had.

Something is missing.

The cut glass ashtray

is here and overflowing,

the big bottle of homemade,

the pack of English Ovals,

the new red bicycle deck

wrapped in cellophane

and gold edged, the dishes

crusted with the last snack.

The music is gone. The lilt

of his worn voice broken

with the weight of all

those lost languages --

"If you knew Solly like

I knew Solly, oy oy

oy what a girl." That music

made new each day and absent

forever from the corners

ofrooms like this one

darkening with dusk.

The music a boy would laugh

at until it went out

and days began and ended

without the banging fist,

without the old truths

of blood and water, without

the loud cries of I won,

you lost
, without song.






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