®

Today's poem is by Karl Kirchwey

Variations on a Postcard by T. S. Eliot

(Lausanne, December, 1921)

This is a very quiet town,
except when the children come downhill
on scooters over the cobbles.
Mostly banks and chocolate shops.
Good orchestra plays "The Love Nest."
A horse fell down yesterday;
one cannot see the mountains, too foggy.

Not particularly fond of children or mountains,
one feels rather foggy.
The town orchestra played "The Love Nest"
with a splash like horse's blood over cobbles.
Then past the chocolate shops
came banked scooters through the quiet.

The horse's feet were planted in fog,
and the banks, of course, were quiet.
There were scooters outside the chocolate shops.
It is all downhill from the orchestra to the love nest,
I suppose, over cobbles quarried from the mountains.
The children—I forget where they play.

The mountains have the shoulders of a horse.
One can never see the love nest,
but the children have all ended in banks.
The town shines like an orchestra
in tones of chocolate and fog,
or like the quiet cobbles.



Copyright © 2002 Karl Kirchwey All rights reserved
from The Southwest Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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