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ISSUE:  Summer 1935

Grape-treader Time,
Bald curator of joys
Plucked ere a prime;
Whose guest the weevil is,
Whose will the spider,
Or champing termite, wreaks;
Keen heart-divider
Who deepest vows unspeaks;
The tyrant-friend
Who woe or weal unlocks,
And each will end:
O fangèd paradox!

Your secret pulse
The huddled jockey knows;
Between the bull’s
Horns, as the cape flows,
The matador;
The pitcher on his mound,
Sun low, tied score;
The plowman when drouth-bit ground
Deflects the plow;
The cutpurse in the press.
Your pulse these know;
But all than lovers less.

Than lovers less?
What word had touched the heart
One cannot guess.
It was a place apart:
Of rock and sea,
Salt grass, and the salt wind,
And wind-crooked tree.
Sun gilded sea and land,
The hour near prime.
I spoke of Time. You said:
There is no Time,
Since then some friends are dead;
Hates cold, once hot;
Ambitions thewless grown;
Old slights forgot:
And the weeper is made stone.
We, too, have lain
Apart, with continents
And seas between.
Your words’ most brave contents
Came hollowly.
I tried to frame your face
In the mind’s eye;
And could, a little space.
Though pondering it,
The chapters glad or sorry,
We can commit
No moral from our story.

Old winnower!
I praise your pacèd power;
Not truth I fear.

How ripe is turned the hour.


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