IN DREAMS ( from Elizabeth Bishop’s “Three Poems”)

May 12, 2009


All passionate words that meet the mind’s approval

The heart rejects and will not listen to.

Even those chosen not from love, but art or science.

The heart sits in his echoing house

And would not speak at all.


The mind goes on to say: “Fortunate affection

Still young enough to raise a monument

To the first look lost beyond the eyelashes.”

But the heart sees fields cluttered with statues

And does not want to look.


Younger than the mind and less intelligent,

He refuses all food, all communications;

Only at night, in dreams seeking his fortune,

Sees travel, and turns up strange face-cards.


                          Elizabeth Bishop, from “Three Poems”


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