from: Personal and Impersonal: Six Aesthetic Realists: Louis Dienes

 



 I ASKED FOR IT

Now while
Paratroopers, sipping glasses of red and white wine,
Drift on their parachutes
Through the chambers
Of the Churches of God;
While books with fluttering pages
Vaporize into a fragrant mist
Which lifts off the roofs of houses;
While small boys stoke fires in suburban homes;
Take my hand,
Pull up a chair with the other one,
And try to tell me of
The nature of reality.

    If the salts precipitate from my blood while you talk,
    Making little scraping noises in my veins and arteries,
    As my blood circulates;
    Or if my shoes
    Shrivel up and decide
    To be pleased frogs;

    Or if my arms
    Become metallic and clunk hollowly,
    As I lean my elbows on the table;
    Take heed and talk louder and more interestingly
    So that my ears should burn and my breast burst
    With the loveliness and movingness
    Of your words.

   I am prepared for whatever
   May come out of your mouth—
   I have spent years in preparing myself
   And if I prove unable to take it,
   At least say that I asked for it,
   As they throw me into a vacant lot
   And drive back to town,
   Yawning with the boredom
   At the job
   Of discarding my body.

Personal & Impersonal (New York: Defintion Press, 1959)

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