Iconography Says

In that year I was perfect
and in mourning

Blue glass tends to replace
lapis, I look out and it's
winter: from my window
I see only afternoons, white
silent trumpet flowers, each
abiding in its proper exile, come
to better terms, wrong air
where voice is theft itself

Tamper, tempered, sun throws me
like a shadow, very unlike a day
between two rains (and in
describing, it was that nothing
which defended me, dearest
unknown, dear why, why not
as well: presence
of thing without a thing)

Hedge, thicket, shawled
shrubs, picket of foliage, leaves
green, browning debris: yellow
trees in series, short histories
of color (four hours
of purple, four hours of red):
raw vessel of wet winds
left wordless, eventual

Wherever risk accumulates
and he unlooses all the wings,
shifts picture planes, tectonic
plates apart: petty exterminations
ruined by gone (our lady in
the tense "not yet," many
things being there, you are
elsewhere), the dangers of less

Selfish, I keep all these for me

by Reginald Shepherd

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