Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Jack Scott writes


Lives fall like leaves to compost
as if the plummet to extinction
were another form of birth.
Some cling to tree,
to life, tenacious,
rotting on their limbs,

Histories and bones:
lost wax castings of the mind,
time’s jewelry.

Paint the magic pageant
in a private book;
celebrate the ritual
of passing.

Your smile upon it: sunlight.
Your fingers are a kind of rain.
Each page papyrus,
each word, a sprig of ink.

Printing presses writer from the written,
distills his juices willingly to ink,
puts up his loved one for adoptions
into ten thousand foster homes.

Paper is the fullest gift when empty,
the best and most of lovers
to those who meld with it:
a welcome, and a welcome mat.

Page one, the breaking of the ice,
the promise of its thawing;
before post mortem’s cast in bronze
this first love is cast electric .

Page one and printing press,
resurrection in embalming ink,
create and publish me,
bound to be full length.

Will child resemble father,
sliced so thin and spread so far?
Leaves that drop from Maple
can come to rest beneath an Oak.
Will Egypt ever die? Babylon? Atlantis?
For their echoes, whispers, memory,
are we posterity, heirs of Phoenix,
each word parched maize from pyramid
rescued from anhydrous granary
by water sprinkled on each opened leaf
of books’ time tumbled compost.


1 comment:

  1. The a phoenix was a long-lived bird that cyclically flamed out of existence every 1,400 years and then regenerated itself by arising from the ashes of its predecessor. Various ancient writers claimed that the bird was the size of an eagle. Some described its peacock-like coloring, though Herodotus said it was red and yellow (Ezekiel the Dramatist specified red legs and yellow eyes), but Lactantius said that its eyes were blue like sapphires and that its legs were covered in yellow-gold scales and had rose-colored talons. The bird was sometimes associated with the similar-sounding Phoenicia, famous for its purple dye made from conch shells, and its name was supposedly derived from its allegedly purple-red hue; because the costly purple dye was associated with the upper classes, the phoenix was referred to as "the royal bird." It was often pictured with a nimbus, often with seven rays like Helios, the Greek personification of the sun. Pliny the Elder described the crest of feathers on its head, and Ezekiel compared it to a rooster that was larger than an ostrich.


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