by Elaine Equi
for John Ashbery
The days are long and dull and perilously bright
as I stroll the leafy corridor of the Academy.
Here, a near-nude body flexes his dumbbells.
There, a Samson upholds the twin pillars
of chocolate and vanilla ice cream.
No one but one has ever been outside
in the cool air and lived to tell the story
of our shadows parading before the garage door
with tongs and fly swatters. We have no memory
of times past - or an otherwise world, lush and verdant,
uncontaminated by ideas of any kind.
Last updated February 23, 2023