The Widening Compass Of Pain

Poem By Patrick White


At war with the world and yourself
like two halves of the same unbroken wishbone,
teach the children how to approach their crossroads
in peace, and speak of the sword of the slayer
like a sacred syllable in the mouth of the slain
that cut through your umbilical cord
like a link in a golden chain that held you back
from the liberation of a lyrically unbounded life.

Mollify the poison of the thorn with the cure
in the medicine bag of the other fang.
When the wedding gown of the Japanese plum tree
is ruined in the rain and the dust like blossoms
blowing down the road like the happiness you hoped for,
be the nude in the doorway of a darker bliss
that roots its revelation like lightning in the soil
of your flesh, like deltas of insight greeting
an ocean of awareness at the end of a long pilgrimage,
knowing the return journey is more radiant than the first.

Comments about The Widening Compass Of Pain

reveals reality awakens apirit really is lovely
reveals reality awakens apirit really is lovely
reveals reality awakens apirit really is lovely
Chose your battles. The parent child ones are ones we should never ignore as they are attatched unconditionally. great poem thanks
'The Widening Compass Of Pain' teaches mystic lessons sudden revelations, insights into shifting shades of reality, with the cruel cold certainty of blade point piercing third eye. Another superb poem read with appreciation.

5,0 out of 5
2 total ratings

Other poems of WHITE

Sweet One, Sapphire Lapwing

Sweet one, sapphire lapwing, killdeer, comet;
how haven’t I seen you in everything, casino stars,
the high fires on the mountain that bloom in the snow,
and the tangerine daylilies like the tents of the street lamps

You Are Crazy

You are crazy and beautiful
and wounded and wild
and the youngest daughter
of a coven of poetic sea-witches,

And I Wonder And I Wonder And I Wonder

And I wonder and I wonder and I wonder
even in the midst of this harvest of wheat,
this windfall of apples, the siloes of the sun
full, and this blue moon coming back on

When Someone Loves You And You'Re No One

for Kristine Marie

When someone loves you and you're no one,
what happens then? What do you have to give

Burning World, Take Me

Burning world, take me, fold me in your flaming arms
and let me disappear into the unforgiving night.
Among these blind, here, in their black eggs,
eyeless birds who nest in their own ignorance,