Long after Hopkins
Nothing at dusk, lord, but dust and road to keep it. The ﬁeld kneels under white pines, umbra the edge to whom this is addressed : a mind part fern, part birch : two turkeys slowly S-ing their necks through inﬂorescence, arrangement more precise than what light leaves ﬁelds : painterly ﬂowers more color than picture, more words for color than tint : alizarin or violet, you could write goldenrod, write cornﬂower, but Queen Anne's lace still hems the low horizon. Faith, what is it abides, what's left of pastoral but unreality. Ask artiﬁce. Ask ornament. Go ahead and ask : what principle animates the natural : owl pink Lady's Slipper orchid white-tailed deer woodchuck : is it only what's visible that's knowable. Twenty dandelions gone to seed; tent worms slung in the articulated tree; what's tiresome : mind unanswered, writing to supply scaffolds to hold up scenery, nothing but queries and plywood, string strung to a high struck bell auguring : it's too late to see a third turkey left headless, wreck of feathers the owl scared, scattered in grass—
From Sight Map by Brian Teare. Copyright © 2009 by Brian Teare. Used by permission of University of California Press. All rights reserved.
Born in Athens, Georgia in 1974, Brian Teare is the author of several poetry collections, including The Room Where I Was Born (University of Wisconsin Press, 2003), which was awarded both the Brittingham Prize and the 2004 Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry.
Date Published: 2009-01-01
Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/long-after-hopkins