The rushes at the river's edge, in the shadow
of a tensile span, make a cloudy rustling.
Give voice (below that rusty trestling)
to an urgent source, in shuttling undertow.
Where an ancient vagrant trails his fingers.
Grazing, whiling away a wasted hour, there
beneath steel talons of an eagle's aerie.
Lapsed into memory of bolder wings.
But let it go, let it go...
Crusaders strain toward Mizpah or Montjoie,
the paramount anointing mound, their Calvary
for thundering cavalry, a glaring chariot-show...
his donkey's keyed to a different, a diffident drum.
It's here, in a nondescript burbling of delta salt.
Something tumbling down from Victorian vault -
lake-drawn dawn silver skipping over the ho-hum
mud-stream. Ah, he confirms, even Solomon slept.
Slept like Nebuchadnezzar on his hands and knees
until that immured wraith (among willow trees)
floated into view... deigned to descend, yclept
his very name : the silken spouse, the river-
nymph, a morning diorama, light as a dream is
light. She was with him as some Io or Isis was
and is - as Magdalen slumbers in the dawn-clover;
distaff sceptre, volute volunteer - a Sheba, she.
As Lucy rose apace, pacing into the laggard road
of history... so her streambed (O motherlode
of all desire) repeals that rust-corona'd mystery.
Fontegaia hoboes on.