The Anabasis

In memoriam L.N.L. ob. MCMXXXII
Pro domus suae utilitati matronae poeta comis
Noble beyond degree
In a democracy:

Slight woman whose spent grace

Banishes their vision

To the thin trackless air,

Stop now upon the stair

As they have seen you do

Meridional and true,

And with nut-brown hair

Restore location

To them now blinded quite

By the grave’s after-light,

For unless it be done

The slave heart all alone

Strives tunelessly

To go where you are gone-

Whether to vaults of air,

Imponderable nowhere,

Or the reducing sea-

The regions that are fair

Beyond heart’s mastery.

They try your form to see

(Its lineless agony)

In our philosophy

Which stops, as cold and bare

As headless hair,

As lifeless as your bones,

Obtuse as meadow stones:

Re-corporated be!

(They cry you in despair)

Lest we, a blind race,

Imitate mortality

For all our living’s pace,

And drawn into the bliss

Of your dispersed face

Should join, before our place,

Death’s long anabasis. 

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