Pretty seemed about so good, and more 
than enough to drink, a stretch of years 
like public theater, except for the siren's scream, 
the looks when eyes have had enough, 
and all the neighbor enterprise, turning the eyes 
from news that kept the body up, 
expecting to hear a man confess to his sad meal. 
Lord, he asks himself, hadn't a heart 
seemed audience, the bassoons and baritones, 
the love-sweats smeared 
and lingering violas, the blood-fruit lingering 
with the beers and liederkranz? 
– Because he's come to catch his breath, 
because the blackbirds skitter 
where the flowers stood, he feels himself one more
among the kinds of neverbirth,
and reads the light specks pearling, assuming 
properties, the looks of streets he follows 
to conclusions in small rooms, small rooms leading
to small rooms and into traffic once again, 
and traffic about as dangerous as creation gets. 
– Light will assume its place 
over the fruits her hands arrange, finding its place 
on strings she'd looped around the tuning pegs, 
until the mandolins and the guitars and the machines 
take on alignments, until love, wink-shod, 
and love, dog-eared, dog-tired with revisions, 
would again eclipse the crimes, 
eclipse this wedge of light, this fevered 
constancy, excusing a man 
his pearls and more public