Two Songs for a Gunner

by John Ciardi

John Ciardi

I. Firing Tracers

When I was dangerous tracers leaped from me.
What a wild fountain I sprayed at the zodiac
Falling how-many-colored to sea-dark
Of the world's body under, where powerfiully
I rode it and rode it done. "Look, Mother, how gay
And luminous a sperm I spend in play!"

II. Being Fired At

When I was danger's the tracers' endless
Jeweled cobra struck at my running tomb
In a cloud. How chaste and sweet a womb
I covered in to praise its luminous
Waver and fall from power. And as it fell,
How deep an egg I curled in very well.

Collected Poems of John Ciardi

Last updated March 01, 2023