Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, MASKS, by MARIANNE MOORE

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MASKS, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Loon'....'goose'....And 'vulture'
Last Line: Laugh in superb contempt at folly's catalogue!
Subject(s): Birds

"Loon". ..."goose". ...and "vulture"....
Thus, from the kings of water and of air,
Men pluck three catchwords for their empty lips.
Mock them in turn, wise, dumb triumvirate!
You, gander, with stout heart tooled like your wings of steel,
What coward knows your soul?
"Egyptian vultures, clean as cherubim,
All ivory and jet," sons of the burning sun,
What creatures call you 'foul'?
And you, nature's own child,
You most precocious water bird,
That shouts exultantly among lone lakes,
You, foremost in the madman's alphabet—
Laugh in superb contempt at folly's catalogue!

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