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This poem is taken from PN Review 153, Volume 30 Number 1, September - October 2003.

Two Poems Gabriel Levin

The Numen

You'd gone on about sudden windfalls
tumbling into our laps unbeknown and timely
like stabs of sunlight in winter as I slipped
in my pocket a snapshot of an old Underwood tongued
with fire that you'd dug out of your drawer,
and we spoke of what it meant to be a rhapsode
(the lit stub in your hand skirting the precincts
of your body) while minutes before our words had woven
the strangest notions: my battered portable,
we agreed, had turned into an instrument
of the archaic, and you fancied time had stripped the space
we inhabit to a point where silence reigned
as words in the absence of a foothold shrivelled
to nothing. And the mind quivered to pour
its contents freely as a raft threading the river
...


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