19 December 2009

John Berryman

[from John Berryman's The Dream Songs,Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 1969]


The Father of the Mill surveyed his falls,
his daughterly race, his flume, his clover, privy, of all
his waterfall, found well.
Rain fell in June like . . . grace? One flopping trout
(a rainbow) make his lunch who took his bait.
Pitch, & Fate flout.

Each cat should seizing private waterfall,
or rent, as Henry do. Seizure is gall,
I guess. Yes;
we nothing own. But we are lying owned.
When last his burning publisher telephoned,
he dying to confess.

The father and the mill purveyed their falls:
grist, grist! Still, stamping on Fate,
he lauded his lady;
ladies. Waders were treble at his end
or ends. The fool danced in the waterfall
losing his footing, ready.

1 comment:

  1. i read The Dream Songs last year, such a fascinating book!