Wednesday, November 07, 2007

John Mack, "White Lines"

John Mack

White Lines

With the lady of Ise I might have ridden small boats

That row the waves, and avoided the tangles of this sea.


Like jade may you be invariably firm and tender; like a bracelet may there be no break between before and after.

The things have no intrinsic value. They are meant to signify.


Fireflies pierce the curtained window,
the dragon song turns pale,
Phoenix airs in thinning mist turn
the dwarf pines darker green, the court bamboo
tinkles, look—she is moving in pieces like a heron,
her pendant robe stirring the jade dust.


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