DR (1949 / Los Angeles, California)

Against Angels

Somebody asked me
but I'm not going
to argue about

the topic of the soul,
deduce or repeat
inductive facts

for its evidence.

For me it's what
the Alsatian poet meant
when he wrote of

the 'precision of
the indefinable.'

And I've risen
in the plain rinse
of that precision

a couple times before,
and before that.

But I don't have any
depth for angels,
not Lawrence's angel

which he thought was made
when a man's soul
blended into

a woman's soul. And not
Rilke's angels-their beauty-
which he believed

was nothing but
the beginning
of a terror

he could just
barely endure.
I think there is

something somewhat
neurotic about
the prestige

and rarity
of angels-so,
I'll stay plain,

even crude,
a turkey buzzard
among herons

and ruby-crowned kinglets.
And I'd be cautious
of angels-Constantine the Great

for instance, contracted leprosy
after dreaming of an angel
pouring water on him.

by Doren Robbins

Comments (2)

I can feel the slow trickle of the last lines...splash!
Dear Turkey Buzzard, I like this poem.