Collecte Works

Collecte Works by Lorine Niedecker Page B

Book: Collecte Works by Lorine Niedecker Read Free Book Online
Authors: Lorine Niedecker
eye
         to a brush so he
                     could scrubble
    Our small boat's motor raced
                 Great Blue
    the heron sailing as in China
        not caring
                    to win
     

     
    Thomas Jefferson Inside
    Winter when no flower
    The Congress away from home
    Love is the great good use
    one person makes of another
    (Daughter Polly of the strawberry
                           letter)
    Frogs sing—then of a sudden
    all their lights go out
    The country moves toward violets
                               and aconites
     

     
    Foreclosure
    Tell em to take my bare walls down
    my cement abutments
    their parties thereof
    and clause of claws
    Leave me the land
    Scratch out: the land
    May prose and property both die out
    and leave me peace
     

     
    HIS CARPETS FLOWERED
    William Morris
    I
    —how we're carpet-making
    by the river
    a long dream to unroll
    and somehow time to pole
    a boat
    I designed a carpet today—
    dogtooth violets
    and spoke to a full hall
    now that the gall
    of our society's
    corruption stains throughout
    Dear Janey I am tossed
    by many things
    If the change would bring
    better art
    but if it would not?
    O to be home to sail the flood
    I'm possessed
    and do possess
    Employer
    of labor, true—
    to get done
    the work of the hand…
    I'd be a rich man
    had I yielded
    on a few points of principle
    Item sabots
    blouse—
    I work in the dye-house
    myself
    Good sport dyeing
    tapestry wool
    I like the indigo vats
    I'm drawing patterns so fast
    Last night
    in sleep I drew a sausage—
    somehow I had to eat it first
    Colorful shores—mouse ear…
    horse-mint…The Strawberry Thief
    our new chintz
    II
    Yeats saw the betterment of the workers
    by religion—slow in any case
    as the drying of the moon
    He was not understood—
    I rang the bell
    for him to sit down
    Yeats left the lecture circuit
    yet he could say: no one
    so well loved
    as Morris
    III
    Entered new waters
    Studied Icelandic
    At home last minute signs
    to post:
    Vetch
    grows here—Please do not mow
    We saw it—Iceland—the end
    of the world rising out of the sea-
    cliffs, caves like 13th century
    illuminations
    of hell-mouths
    Rain squalls through moonlight
    Cold wet
    is so damned wet
    Iceland's
    black sand
    Stone buntings'
    fly-up-dispersion
    Sea-pink and campion a Persian
    carpet
     

     
    DARWIN
    I
    His holy
              slowly
                         mulled over
       matter
    not all “delirium
               of delight”
                         as were the forests
       of Brazil
    “Species are not
              (it is like confessing
                        a murder)
        immutable”
    He was often becalmed
              in this Port Desire by illness
                        or rested from species
       at billiard table
    As to Man
                “I believe Man…
                          in the same predicament
       with other animals”
    II
    Cordilleras to climb—Andean
               peaks “tossed about
                         like the crust
       of a broken pie”
    Icy wind
              Higher, harder
                       Chileans advised eat onions
       for shortness of breath
    Heavy on him:
              Andes miners carried up
                         great loads—not allowed
       to stop for breath
    Fossil bones near Santa Fé
              Spider-bite-scauld
                       Fever
        Tended by an old woman
    “Dear Susan…
              I am ravenous
                       for the sound
       of the pianoforte”
    III
    FitzRoy blinked—
               sea-shells on mountain tops!
                         The laws of

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