I placed a jar in Tennessee, And round it was, upon a hill. It made the slovenly wilderness Surround that hill. The wilderness rose up to it, And sprawled around, no longer wild. The jar was round upon the ground And tall and of a port in air. It took dominion everywhere. The jar was gray and bare. It did not give of bird or bush, Like nothing else in Tennessee.
Wallace Stevens - 1879-1955
Man Carrying Thing
The poem must resist the intelligence Almost successfully. Illustration: A brune figure in winter evening resists Identity. The thing he carries resists The most necessitous sense. Accept them, then, As secondary (parts not quite perceived Of the obvious whole, uncertain particles Of the certain solid, the primary free from doubt, Things floating like the first hundred flakes of snow Out of a storm we must endure all night, Out of a storm of secondary things), A horror of thoughts that suddenly are real. We must endure our thoughts all night, until The bright obvious stands motionless in cold.