Published on Academy of American Poets (https://poets.org)


Leviathan

Truth also is the pursuit of it: 
Like happiness, and it will not stand. 

Even the verse begins to eat away 
In the acid. Pursuit, pursuit; 

A wind moves a little, 
Moving in a circle, very cold. 

How shall we say? 
In ordinary discourse—
 
We must talk now. I am no longer sure of the words, 
The clockwork of the world. What is inexplicable 

Is the 'preponderance of objects.’ The sky lights 
Daily with that predominance 

And we have become the present. 

We must talk now. Fear 
Is fear. But we abandon one another. 

Credit


From New Collected Poems by George Oppen, copyright © 1965 by George Oppen. Reprinted by permission of New Directions Publishing Corp.

Author


George Oppen

Born in 1908, George Oppen was known for both his poetry and his political activism, he was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1969

Date Published: 1965-01-01

Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/leviathan