we could send you out there
to join the cackle squad,
but hey, that highly accomplished,
thinly regarded equestrian—well there was no way
he was going to join the others’ field trip.
Wouldn’t put his head on the table.
But here’s the thing:
They had owned great dread,
knew of a way to get away from here
through ice and smoke
always clutching her fingers, like it says
Once we were passionate about the police,
yawned in the teeth of pixels,
but a far rumor blanked us out.
We bathed in moonshine.
Now, experts disagree.
Were we unhappy or sublime?
We’ll have to wait until the next time
an angel comes rapping at the door
to rejoice docently.
(I know there’s a way to do this.)
Copyright © 2015 by John Ashbery. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on April 1, 2015, by the Academy of American Poets.