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Author: MITCHELL, STEPHEN
Matches Found: 91


Mitchell, Stephen    Poet's Biography
91 poems available by this author


ABRAHAM       
First Line: What had become very clear to him that night on the fast
Last Line: Grope in the blinding light, toward a goal he could be sure of %never reaching


ACHILLES AND THE TORTOISE       
First Line: Ready, set at their respective starting places, staring into the distance
Last Line: Maybe if I tried something different,' achilles says. 'maybe %a new pair of shoes.'


ADAM IN LOVE       
First Line: The earfth around him: he within his life
Last Line: Flickering from the distance like a glowworm


ANNUNCIATION       
First Line: He tiptoes into the room almost as if he were an intruder. Then
Last Line: Will remember the message, in a little while. In a few more minutes. %but not just now


AT THE TOP OF THE CHRISTMAS TREE       
First Line: Soon it will be dawn, and I wait up here with a heavy heart. I am
Last Line: Wings are folded behind me. A tear, permanent, hangs from the %corner of my eye, like a tiny almond


AT THE TOP OF THE CHRISTMAS TREE       
First Line: Soon it will be dawn, and I wait up here with a heavy heart


AT THE ZOO       
First Line: Such big sweet ugly faces. There are many visitors, so the youngest
Last Line: Two o'clock arrives, and the keepers with the wheelbarrows of %beef. %so. It has come to this


BAAL SHEM TOV       
First Line: All the old metaphors
Last Line: You had to pull them up quickly, %quickly, from far away


BALDR       
First Line: He stands before the council of the gods, invulnerable in his
Last Line: Goods look on in horror? Why do we walk under the green sprig at %christmastide expecting not betray


BAMBOO    Poem Text    
First Line: Sometimes I have spent hours face to face with a single stalk
Subject(s): Bamboo


BAMBOO       
First Line: Sometimes I have spent hours face to face with a single stalk
Last Line: Down the lines of verse, and with one final, half-dry flourish: %signs my name
Subject(s): Bamboo


BINDING OF ISAAC       
First Line: Abraham is caught in a dilemma. In parable, he must sacrifice his
Last Line: Onto his right arm, it will take much hard work, many hundreds %of rebirths, before he is ready to h


BRIEF THEODICY       
First Line: Of all human comestibles, the lemon is most nearly allied to the
Last Line: Thus, lemon juice is the traditional cure for scurvy and %optimism


BROOMS       
First Line: Brooms make excellent dance partners. Though they are bald
Last Line: Toes, they will always apologize by simultaneously dusting off %your shoe


CASSANDRA    Poem Text    
First Line: Nobody can stand her anymore. She has become obsessed, boring
Last Line: Up in a cheap hotel room, in the dark, she writhes with them, whispering nuclear holocaust, acid rai
Subject(s): Cassandra (mythology)


CASSANDRA       
First Line: Nobody can stand her anymore. She has become obsessed, boring
Last Line: Dark, she writhes with them, whispering nuclear holocaust, acid %rain
Subject(s): Cassandra


CASSANDRA       
First Line: Nobody can stand her anymore. She has become obsessed


CELLO       
First Line: It rests inside its close-fitting red-velvet-lined case the way
Last Line: Leans back and waits for the bow to be drawn across, for the%resonance to fill it completely


CERBERUS       
First Line: His three fierce mastiff-heads bloodcurdlingly bark. No spirit
Last Line: They are no longer living in the trivial, safe universe of their %desires. Everything here is real


CHERRY PLUMS       
First Line: They grow all over berkeley, along the sidewalks, and start to
Last Line: Well I don't care. I call them plum cherries.' %the title of this parable is 'plum cherries.'


CINDERELLA    Poem Text    
First Line: Cindreella, the soul, sits among the ashes
Subject(s): Cinderella


CINDERELLA       
First Line: Cinderella, the soul, sits among the ashes. She is depressed, as
Last Line: It is like the man in the mirror, says the fairy godmother. No %once can pull him out but himself


COURTESY       
First Line: No, it is not a matter of bows and fine speeches. We've had
Last Line: Battle, taking the lute from under the arm of his sleeping boy- %servant, gently


DR. JOHNSON    Poem Text    
First Line: Something I left behind
Last Line: Is no farther off than a sigh
Subject(s): Johnson, Samuel (1709-1784)


DR. JOHNSON       
First Line: Something I left behind
Last Line: We'll be leaving in a moment. London %is no farther off than a sigh
Subject(s): Johnson, Samuel (1709-1784)


EVOLUTION       
First Line: First came eohippus, the dawn horse, dog-sized and equable
Last Line: Became the sea horse. The other grew wings. Known as the pegasus, %it occasionally gives free rides


FAUST       
First Line: Faust begins by cutting into a circle. This, given the purity of his
Last Line: He does not enter the world as the frist adam entered eve. %there are other ways of knowing


FOUR WATERCOLORS BY TAO-CHI, SELS       


FRANCIS       
First Line: Blessed are the poor in spirit
Last Line: Of the moment, like children looking %down from the bedroom window, %waving hello, goodbye


FREUD       
First Line: Your friend the sphinx had promised you
Last Line: Who are you? Where do you come from? %why do you feel afraid?


FROG PRINCE       
First Line: Gorgeous, charming, rich (and spiritually mature as well), the
Last Line: Easily have slipped out of her impatient grasp. But he knew the %stakes. It was now or never. And he


GIFT       
First Line: Besides the small gift that he delighted in giving her when the
Last Line: Quietest moments, he could see it in her eyes, reflected as in a medium %of supreme clarity and love


GOOD SAMARITAN ET AL.       
First Line: The priest, the levite, the samaritan, and the man who fell
Last Line: Aside, for a parable's sake. And without the parable, I would %never have been saved
Subject(s): Good Samaritan


GREAT-GRANDFATHER CHANG       
First Line: At last! An ancestor who understands
Last Line: Read: 'whatever you require, the only one who can give it is %yourself.' both faces are smiling


HALO THAT WOULD NOT LIGHT       
First Line: He had tried everything: new batteries, new bulb, a new off-and-
Last Line: Slightly tilted to one side, at the rakish angle at which a gentleman %might wear a boater


HITLER IN SHEOL       
First Line: I needed to write a parable about hitler. My friend said 'don't.'
Last Line: He said, 'you must crawl to the very center of evil before you %can see the stars.'


HUANG-PO       
First Line: Closer than we can know
Last Line: And too true to be good, its image %flashes everywhere we turn. %marvelous! - tut, tut, it's nothing


IN THE GARDEN       
First Line: Eve bites into the fruit. Suddenly she realizes that she is naked
Last Line: Knowledge?!' laughs the serpent. 'this fruit is from the tree %of life.'


IRON HANDS       
First Line: Under your mother's pillow,' he said. 'that's where the key is
Last Line: Going to give up that golden ball. %both of us meant business


ISAIAH       
First Line: The seraphim had been almost too polite. They had nodded
Last Line: Spoken question filled the air with dry heat, like a sauna. %already he could smell is flesh burning


JACOB AND THE ANGEL       
First Line: Her arms pinned back, impaled against the night
Last Line: The sun had risen. He could let her go


JEROME    Poem Text    
First Line: In durer's engraving
Last Line: Dozes, with half-closed eyes
Subject(s): Durer, Albrecht (1471-1528); Jerome, Saint (347-419)


JEROME       
First Line: In durer's engraving
Subject(s): Durer, Albrecht (1471-1528); Jerome, Saint (347-419)


JOB       
First Line: During the first stage of suffering, job's companion was a worm
Last Line: Has not diminished. A miracle is no cure for bad breath
Subject(s): Job (bible)


JONAH       
First Line: After the first few hours he came to feel quite at ease inside the
Last Line: Plight, himself, resonating through the vault: the strange, %gurgling, long-breathed-out, beautiful


KAFKA    Poem Text    
First Line: Whoever has, even once, glimpsed
Last Line: Cannot be content with anything / less
Subject(s): Kafka, Franz (1883-1924)


KAFKA       
First Line: Whoever has, even once, glimpsed
Last Line: That was once too strong for your eyes, %you knew that they didn't matter. %they didn't matter in th
Subject(s): Kafka, Franz (1883-1924)


KINGDOM OF HEAVEN       
First Line: Ooh, make it a sad story,' the children said. 'make it a sad, sad
Last Line: All right,' I said. 'once there was a needle, and every time it %pierced the eyes ...'


LAKESIDE GEESE    Poem Text    
First Line: Desoltaion. The forest's bones
Subject(s): Cold; Geese; Paintings & Painters


LAKESIDE GEESE       
First Line: Desolation. The forest's bones. Blunt strokes of gray and black
Last Line: Stands halfway across the frail wooden bridge. %when it is cold, you die of cold


LAZARUS       
First Line: He had almost reached the end of the tunnel when he eard his
Last Line: Body, left behind so gratefully, which had already begun to stink. %greater love has no man


LEFT HAND       
First Line: He is the awkward onw, the fool, the younger brother. Can't
Last Line: Perhaps that is why he has been chose to wear the golden circle, %promise of all fulfillment: the ma


LONG ENGAGEMENT       
First Line: She was a leo, he (although he despised astrology) was a unicorn
Last Line: In the evening they would lie down together as peaceably as in %isaiah's garden


MANJUSHRI       
First Line: My wife and my old zen master both were born at the cusp of july
Last Line: Living buddhas are a dime a dozen,' the lion thinks, 'but a %good wooden buddha is hard to find.'


MATHEMATICS       
First Line: Any place you look is an entrance. The equals-sign. That fabulous
Last Line: Beautiful a solution is, the truer. Don't worry, the technicians %will find a use for it. Let x stan


MEISTER ECKHART       
First Line: God, for the love of god
Last Line: How singular! I am nothing. %I am. I will never die


METAPHOR LEFT OUT IN THE COLD       
First Line: Coleridge says that human beings are divided into platonists and
Last Line: O pig of god, that takest away the sins of the world!


MONTAIGNE       
First Line: The beginning of wisdom is to know
Last Line: Half-jewish frenchman who at first %liked radishes; then didn't; then wound up %liking them after al


NAMING THE ANIMALS       
First Line: The first few were east. The dog looked just like a 'dog,' the cat
Last Line: Capybara. Pangolin. Gnu. %('is that spelled n-u?' god asked.%'g-n-u.')
Subject(s): Animals; Names


NARCISSUS       
First Line: It was not the image of his own face that transfixed him as he bent
Last Line: Would be able to see straight through the bottom. And at that %moment, he knew, the image would disa


ORCHID ABD ROCK    Poem Text    
First Line: I have painted them in the same mild tones of grayish green
Subject(s): Paintings & Painters; Orchids


ORCHID AND ROCK       
First Line: I have painted them in the same mild tones of grayish green
Last Line: When speech comes from a quiet heart, it has the strength of%the orchid, and the fragrance of rock


ORPHEUS    Poem Text    
First Line: Pluto sits on his ebony throne enchanted. 'beautiful,' he sighs
Last Line: She turns to the king, “yes, darling, “ she says, “let them go.”
Subject(s): Mythology - Classical; Orpheus


ORPHEUS       
First Line: Pluto sits on his ebony throne enchanted. 'beautiful,' he sighs
Last Line: She turns to the king. 'yes, darling,' she says. 'let them go'
Subject(s): Mythology - Classical; Orpheus


PALM READING       
First Line: Slowly, not tentatively, the lines move out from their center
Last Line: The moon rises %out of the deepest flesh %and the whole body%is illumined %in its night


PARABLE OF THE SOWER       
First Line: A sower went forth to sow. Some of his seeds fell upon stony
Last Line: But, my dear, what kind of seeds do you think we're talking %about?'


PASCAL'S VISION       
First Line: Weaned too fast and permitted to grow up among numbers, the
Subject(s): Pascal, Blaise (1623-1662)


PASCAL'S VISION       
First Line: Weaned too fast and permitted to grow up among numbers, the
Last Line: Knows: that nothing is ever suffered in plural. %there is only one body. Only one death
Subject(s): Pascal, Blaise (1623-1662)


PATIENCE       
First Line: She used to show her guests an anchor, an hourglass, a key. That
Last Line: Up the winding stairs to her bedroom. How the door opened by %itself, and her soft, fragrant voice s


PAUL OF TARSUS       
First Line: Stepping from the clear air of the gospel
Last Line: To see him, face to face, %as he sips the wind and hands you%a piece of the bread: take; %eat; this


PENELOPE    Poem Text    
First Line: He had heard from her several times during his long absence
Last Line: Faithful to him, body and heart, as he was to her in his heart alone, alas
Subject(s): Mythology - Classical; Penelope (mythology); Ulysses; Odysseus


PENELOPE       
First Line: He had heard from her several times during his long absence
Last Line: He stands there for a long time before letting himself plunge to %the bottom of her eyes
Subject(s): Mythology - Classical; Penelope (mythology); Ulysses


PICASSO       
First Line: A large man with a head of a bull
Last Line: Its marble lips, slightly parted, seem %to be telling him something
Subject(s): Picasso, Pablo (1881-1973)


PINOCCHIO       
First Line: Everything would have been fine if he had been an obedient puppet
Last Line: Being made flesh. And he could, almost, see the wonder in her %eyes


PRODIGAL SON       
First Line: Sometimes, after a day among the swine, he would be afraid to lie
Last Line: Had been stopped at the crossroads of the horrible and the sacred


RELUCTANT BODHISATTVA       
First Line: Seven or eight years before, she had been awakened in the middle
Last Line: Them, blessed with a name and form, complete, never having to %learn to surrender


SENSE OF PROPORTION       
First Line: There are at least one hundred billion galaxies in the universe
Last Line: From most points of view, the green earth is smaller than an%electron. %all this is happening within


SINAI       
First Line: Everyone knows what happened at the bottom of mount sinai
Last Line: But aleph is a silent letter. %rabbi yosi said, just so.


SPINOZA    Poem Text    
First Line: For the small boy lying in bed
Last Line: Are as difficult as they are rare
Subject(s): Spinoza, Baruch (1632-1677)


SPINOZA       
First Line: For the small boy lying in bed
Subject(s): Spinoza, Baruch (1632-1677)


SPIRITUAL TEACHING       
First Line: These fellows with the third-chakra problems, who think they
Last Line: A monk bowed and asked, 'then how do you teach people?' %chao-chou said, 'buddha! Buddha!'


ST. INEPTUS       
First Line: Born in third-century illyria, he soon established a reputation
Last Line: Flammable in the vicinity). His intercession is said to do more %good than harm


TAO-CHI       
First Line: Dressed in his long, white, long-sleeved
Last Line: Suddenly, with a shock, he realizes, %that nothing in this life - nothing - %nothing - is ever lost


THE GOOD SAMARITAN ET AL.    Poem Text    
First Line: The priest, the levite, the samaritan, and the man who fell
Subject(s): Good Samaritan


THEY MYTH OF SISYPHUS       
First Line: We tend to think of sisyphus as a tragic hero, condemned by the
Last Line: Aside, let the rock hurtle to the bottom, and go home. %tragedy is the inertial force of the mind


THROUGH THE EYE OF THE NEEDLE       
First Line: The camel catches his breath, wipes the sweat from his brow. It
Last Line: It is not that such things are possible,' the camel thinks, %smiling. 'but such things are possible


VERMEER    Poem Text    
First Line: She stands by the table, poised
Subject(s): Vermeer, Jan (1632-1675)


VERMEER       
First Line: She stands by the table, poised
Last Line: As though the light at the window %were a newborn child %andher arms open enough %to hold it on her
Subject(s): Vermeer, Jan (1632-1675)


WILDERNESS COTTAGE       
First Line: They say that I honor tradition, that I'm a worthy disciple. But I
Last Line: Spirit of nature joins with my spirit, both are transformed.So %that, in the end, everthing leads ba


YESHU OF NAZARETH       
First Line: You came to me when I was nine
Last Line: Open-eyed, leaving behind %everything. As if you were walking %into the final room %of your own hous


ZEN MASTER       
First Line: Three feet tall, he sits cross-legged inside a wooden frame in a
Last Line: Even the trace of a smile. But the smile is there, somewhere, %shining in the heaven of his face lik