Arthur Mitchell

May 30, 2013 § Leave a comment

Slim dragon fly
    too rapid for the eye
        to cage,

contagious gem of virtuosity
make visible, mentality.
Your jewels of mobility

reveal
    and veil
        a peacock-tail.

– Marianne Moore

Lesson of the day: how indentations can mimic a subject; in this case, Mitchell in the act of dance.

Arthur Mitchell

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To a Chameleon

May 9, 2012 § Leave a comment

Hid by the august foliage and fruit
  of the grape-vine
  twine
     your anatomy
       round the pruned and polished stem,
          Chameleon.
          Fire laid upon
       an emerald as long as
     the Dark King’s massy
  one,
could not snap the spectrum up for food
  as you have done.

– Marianne Moore

The poem’s twist is the use of “twine” as a verb and not, as one first expects, a noun (as in “grape-vine twine”). One must look twice to uncover the sinuous syntax.

A Jellyfish

January 24, 2012 § Leave a comment

Visible, invisible
  a fluctuating charm
an amber-tinctured amethyst
  inhabits it, your arm
approaches and it opens
  and it closes; you had meant
to catch it and it quivers;
  you abandon your intent.

– Marianne Moore

A pulsating and cerebral confection on an ethereal creature. The understated indentations, unusual for Moore, oscillate like a jellyfish.

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