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Wallace Stevens On His Way To Work Analysis

Author: poem of David Wagoner Type: poem Views: 14

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He would leave early and walk slowly

     As if balancing books

          On the way to school, already expecting

To be tardy once again and heavy

     With numbers, the unfashionably rounded

          Toes of his shoes invisible beyond

The slope of his corporation. He would pause

     At his favorite fundamentally sound

          Park bench, which had been the birthplace

Of paeans and ruminations on other mornings,

     And would turn his back to it, having gauged the distance

          Between his knees and the edge of the hardwood

Almost invariably unoccupied

     At this enlightened hour by the bums of nighttime

          (For whom the owlish eye of the moon

Had been closed by daylight), and would give himself wholly over

     Backwards and trustingly downwards

          And be well seated there. He would remove

From his sinister jacket pocket a postcard

     And touch it and retouch it with the point

          Of the fountain he produced at his fingertips

And fill it with his never-before-uttered

     Runes and obbligatos and pellucidly cryptic

          Duets from private pageants, from broken ends

Of fandangos with the amoeba chaos chaos

     Couchant and rampant. Then he would rise

          With an effort as heartfelt as a decision

To get out of bed on Sunday and carefully

     Relocate his center of gravity

          Above and beyond an imaginary axis

Between his feet and carry the good news

     Along the path and the sidewalk, well on his way

          To readjusting the business of the earth.


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