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In The Naked Bed, In Plato's Cave Analysis

Author: poem of Delmore Schwartz Type: poem Views: 3

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In the naked bed, in Plato's cave,

Reflected headlights slowly slid the wall,

Carpenters hammered under the shaded window,

Wind troubled the window curtains all night long,

A fleet of trucks strained uphill, grinding,

Their freights covered, as usual.

The ceiling lightened again, the slanting diagram

Slid slowly forth.

                      Hearing the milkman's clop,

his striving up the stair, the bottle's chink,

I rose from bed, lit a cigarette,

And walked to the window. The stony street

Displayed the stillness in which buildings stand,

The street-lamp's vigil and the horse's patience.

The winter sky's pure capital

Turned me back to bed with exhausted eyes.

Strangeness grew in the motionless air. The loose

Film grayed. Shaking wagons, hooves' waterfalls,

Sounded far off, increasing, louder and nearer.

A car coughed, starting. Morning softly

Melting the air, lifted the half-covered chair

From underseas, kindled the looking-glass,

Distinguished the dresser and the white wall.

The bird called tentatively, whistled, called,

Bubbled and whistled, so! Perplexed, still wet

With sleep, affectionate, hungry and cold. So, so,

O son of man, the ignorant night, the travail

Of early morning, the mystery of the beginning

Again and again,

                      while history is unforgiven.


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