An aside on Wallace Stevens

An aside on Wallace Stevens

I read him for the granulations of time
            for the immaculate imagery
with which he sketches our existence
            the true interior life that sums us up
for the transparence of place he inhabits
            and for the thoughtfulness of his voice

He is a master of landscapes
            of rivers and mountains and plains
and trees and blackbirds with an acute eye
            for anything that moves
in a field of snow
            and in his observations he is always
central and necessary and just as the stars
            he stands naked in the cosmos

How often do we note that the sea
            breaks on the edges of his lines
that are composed
            for oboe or hautboy
intuitive melodies to be performed
            in the haunted forests of our cities
evoking all those unsettling truths
            so deeply buried in our blood

John Lyons


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