Indomitable busker

It's a mystery to me (a mystery for which I'm grateful) how these long pilgrimage-de-Henri sagas adjust themselves to my own contingencies.  They round themselves up in their own good time.  We are told art is practice practice practice, & maybe that's what it is.  "There's a divinity that shapes our ends, / Rough-hew them how we will" (Hamlet).

For example : I'm moving to Minnesota in a matter of days.  It's been a roller-coaster year, yet this Ravenna Diagram thingum has persisted, kept on keepin' on.  Now - a few days before we leave, & in the midst of much pack-up anxious biz - the fourth chapter of the poem, and a big structural cornice, draws to a close, seemingly in a fairly-fitting fashion (how can I know).

I'm thankful for the poem time.  I'm thankful for the moonshine of this little Ocean State.


This polished late October light.
Burnishes each diamond
of the backyard iron
fence.  One survivor-cricket

churrs behind spruce (indomitable
busker).  Over the rail
a wave of clematis still
surfs; the massive parasol

of luminous russet dogwood leaves
still braces (on its sturdy
mast) against a gusty
autumn breeze.  Halloween in the eaves.

I’m leaving very soon.  The golden
spider packs his poison-
bag, curls (frozen)
in a thread-vortex.  I be beholden

to my Ariadne.  In her hazel eye
the gold lambswool, yellow
Corn Maid poncho flow
into one clay design – pendentive sigh

of wild oats panicle (brown
dangling bird-feet
elegant & neat
as many-rimmed Ravenna urn).

My host is flown.  Like Stella Maris
over the ridge, at Swan
Point Рpivoting on équinoxe
de printemps (April 12 it was


this year)... like Beatrice’s Florence,
born le 4 Juillet – or taut
Francesca, by her net
of Inca wool... ou sont les neiges,

maintenant?  They’ll ride my splintered
coracle back home.
Or (gone threadbare) roam
my prairie west – O mulish cowherd

wind-wag, tickled to Frisco Bay!
Morning Star, look homeward
kind upon yon way-weird
son.  Apollinaire, with calumet...

the wars is over, anyway
– wars in my old heart.
Ravenna’s where we start
again (light brdftprnt of Dante).

Motif of a sacrifice.
Eternity turned
ice-cold (solid,
absolute).  Not nice –

unless you reckon yet again.
The dogwood mast is creaking
in the slanting afternoon;
winter will be coming soon

for Hen, who gathers everyone
into his earthy tavern
(like a Grecian urn)
across far distances... (American).


dogwood (& spruce) on Fisher St.

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