Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, IMPLEMENTS FROM THE 'TOMB OF THE POET'; PIRAEUS ARCHEOLOGICAL MUSEUM, by ALICE E. STALLINGS



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IMPLEMENTS FROM THE 'TOMB OF THE POET'; PIRAEUS ARCHEOLOGICAL MUSEUM, by            
First Line: On the journey to the mundane afterlife
Alternate Author Name(s): Stallings, A. E.
Subject(s): Graves; Museums; Tombs; Tombstones; Art Gallerys


On the journey to the mundane afterlife,
You travel equipped to carry on your trade:
A bronze, small-toothed saw to make repairs,
The stylus and the ink pot and the scraper,
Wax tablets bound into a little book.

Here is the tortoise shell for the cithara,
Bored through with holes for strings, natural sound box.
Here is the harp's wood triangle, all empty --
The sheep-gut having long since decomposed
Into a pure Pythagorean music.

The beeswax, frangible with centuries,
Has puzzled all your lyrics into silence.
I think you were a poet of perfection
Who fled still weighing one word with another,
Since wax forgives and warms beneath revision.


Copyright 2001 by The Modern Poetry Association.
This poem appears in the April 2001 issue of Poetry Magazine.
http://poetrymagazine.org





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