Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, SURFACES AND MASKS; 8, by CLARENCE MAJOR

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SURFACES AND MASKS; 8, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: And as the memory of each
Last Line: A different enchantment / now held
Subject(s): Language; Venice, Italy

A Venice dream of the mainland:
shocked out of night
by morning, in a skiff,
on a duck stream,
my tongue dry, swollen,
as from the air
in a torture room, I stand up
in sleep, looking up
at the zinc dome
of the sky, I try counting
the flock of geese
exploding overhead.
I have about as much luck
doing that
as I have trying
to restrain the mad dogs
barking at them
and running upstream.
Then I woke to the sirens
of acqua alta and the dragons
known very well
to be reality.

Used with the permission of Copper Canyon Press, P.O. Box 271, Port Townsend, WA
98368-0271, www.cc.press.org

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