The Subway

Poem By Allen Tate

Dark accurate plunger down the successive knell
Of arch on arch, where ogives burst a red
Reverberance of hail upon the dead
Thunder like an exploding crucible!
Harshly articulate, musical steel shell
Of angry worship, hurled religiously
Upon your business of humility
Into the iron forestries of hell:

Till broken in the shift of quieter
Dense altitudes tangential of your steel,
I am become geometries, and glut
Expansions like a blind astronomer
Dazed, while the worldless heavens bulge and reel
In the cold revery of an idiot.

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Last night I fled until I came
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Stale lamplight from the corpse of flame;
A nervous window bled.

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I
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I have looked at them long,
My eyes blur; sourceless light
Keeps them forever young
Before our ageing sight.