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This poem is taken from PN Review 84, Volume 18 Number 4, March - April 1992.

Two Poems Christopher Middleton

STELE IN ISTANBUL

The dead man beckons to a water melon
Out of the water melon a big slice was bitten
A cup of clay in his hand he beckons in fact
To the naked wine boy not the water melon
To the naked wine boy he beckons
And wags his beard for he means to speak

However the cup is made of stone
Stone the melon the dead man looks at
Easily it could be the moon at third quarter
A moon to tell what time of night or day
What corner of a lifetime the man died at

Not a corner nor a wrinkle on him the wine boy
Still to make you shiver touches polished his limbs
Any moment now he will dip his jar
...


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