Dead Men

by Hervey Allen

Hervey Allen

To a Metaphysician

If they were shadows walking to and fro
Upon a screen you call reality,
Then, when the light fails, where do shadows go?
Are they the shades of shade called memory?
Yet if they really occupied three-square
And now are only shadows on a screen,
How can the light still cast a shadow there
From shades of shadows that have never been?

Such questions are a mimic pantomime
Of ghosts to utter nothings in dream chairs,
Myopia squinting in a mist of time,
An eye that sees the eye with which it stares.
Your light can only throw the ancient stigma
Of questions solved by posing an enigma.

Last updated January 14, 2019