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This poem is taken from PN Review 111, Volume 23 Number 1, September - October 1996.

Two Poems Robert Pinsky


Ode to Meaning

Dire one and desired one,
Saviour, sentencer -

Ankh Badge Cross.
Dragon,
Engraved figure guarding a hallowed intaglio,
Jasper kinema of legendary Mind,
Naked omphalos pierced
By quills of rhyme or sense, torah-like: unborn
Vein of will, xenophile
Yearning out of Zero.

Untrusting I court you. Wavering
I seek your face, I read
That Crusoe's knife
Reeked of you, that to defile you
The soldier makes the rabbi spit on the torah.
...


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