You see it in the Ode,

The prancing toddler at the park,

In flaxen hair caught floating in the sun,

In chattering oak-leaves stained to rusty brown,

In festivals arising, town by town:

Beer and drink, corrupting the affair,

Shouts that rise on prickly air.


And still

Some strangeness it is that needs to pull

A stranger beauty round itself, like a shawl,

And warm these moments already touched

With chill impermanence for all.


It is a singular note, not questioning

Some injustice or riddle,

Nor remembering born again,

This chord

Sounding sweet atop the orchestra

Of all life’s fadings;


But round and round distraction turns

Breathlessly to this: a most reserved bliss,

Notes through the din,

A calling or an answer, all in one.

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