Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, MUMBLIN' MOTT, by VIRGINIA MOORE



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MUMBLIN' MOTT, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Delightedly devoid of useless brain
Last Line: Who had the sense to be an idiot!
Alternate Author Name(s): Untermeyer, Louis, Mrs.
Subject(s): Fools; Speech Disorders; Idiots; Stuttering; Muteness


Delightedly devoid of useless brain,
Mad Mott had made a crony of the rain
And knew no rival: now they stood apart,
Mumbling a crooked beauty, heart to heart,
Inside a soaking cotton field. The wet
Droll dusk of his demented face was set
Child-like against the measured silver slant
Of his uncalculated confidant.

The chill rain taunted Mott: "You haven't wit
Enough to leap into a lightning slit!"
Mott dipped his eyes. Determined thunder shed
Hostility upon a woollen head
Grinning like chippies. Then a yellow shot
Of lightning hit the heels of mumblin' Mott.
-- And I who heard his laughter seemed to smell
A whiff of dark deceptive asphodel.

What is this carcass with a grinning head,
Buried, and rained upon, and dug up dead?
Here where the weevil and the boll have lain
Mad Mott accepts the challenge of the rain
Unfalteringly, his rags upon a back
No less exuberant for being black.
And I, bleached white and sane, can envy Mott
Who had the sense to be an idiot!





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