THE PERFECT FORMS
Here is Socrates, born under Pisces,
Smiling, complacent as a phallus,
Or Buddha, whose one thought fills immensity:
Visage of Priapus: the undying tail-swinging
Stupidity of the donkey
That carries Christ. How carefully he nurses
This six-day abortion of the Absolute
No better for the fosterings
Of fish, reptile and tree-leaper throughout
Their ages of God-forsaken darkness
This monstrous-headed difficult child!
Of such is the kingdom of heaven.
Those stars are the fleshed forbears
Of these dark hills, bowed like laborers,
And of my blood.
The death of a gnat is a star’s mouth: its skin,
Like Mary’s or Semele’s, thin
As the skin of fire:
A star fell on her, a sun devoured her.