Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, WHAT THEY ASK, by FRANKLIN PIERCE ADAMS



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WHAT THEY ASK, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Always they greet you and say
Last Line: "and what have you been doing?"
Alternate Author Name(s): F. P. A.
Subject(s): Dreams; Thought; Nightmares; Thinking


ALWAYS they greet you and say,
"And what have you been doing?"

They do not ask
What you have thought,
How you wonder, naïvely grave,
In the rich silences of your soul;
Through what white flames you have passed,
Scathed clean, feeling your loves and your hates;
Nor of the dreams you have dreamed,
All purple and gold and the glory of gray cloud heights.

But they always ask
What you have done

And they know a thing or two.
FRANCES.

It's like this, Frances:
Time was when girls and I were well acquainted
And I would ask them:
"And what have you been thinking?
Through what candescent flames have you been passing?
And what—omitting their interpretation—have been your dreams?"

And they would tell me.

So now I say:
"And what have you been doing?"





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