PN Review Print and Online Poetry Magazine
News and Notes
Digital Access to PN Review
Access the latest issues, plus back issues of PN Review with Exact Editions For PN Review subscribers: access the PN Review digital archive via the Exact Editions app Exactly or the Exact Editions website, you will first need to know your PN Review ID number. read more
Poems Articles Interviews Reports Reviews Contributors
Gratis Ad 1
Monthly Carcanet Books
Next Issue Thomas Kinsella in conversation Jeffrey Wainwright comes to grips with St Chad Hsien Min Toh gives us a Korean perspective Iain Bamforth on Lou and Fritz: Sensible Shoes meets Starstruck Judith Bishop on Love and Self-Understanding in an Algorythmic Age

This poem is taken from PN Review 99, Volume 21 Number 1, September - October 1994.

Four Poems John Ashbery

Eternity Sings the Blues
Music lovers everywhere
endorse it - just thought I'd let
you know it's National Frivolity Week
again. Will they ever get done
with these things? Stop commercialising 'em?

Music and worry - the two most terrible
things a man can know. How about
women? Strangely, they come off better
just by observing things. This hundred-year-old
spoon is evidence enough of that. How so?

But music, played by a gifted child,
is just about the finest thing anywhere.
Puts me in mind of a cigar
I smoked in a picket line once. They all thought
the boss hired me to do it. Now I ask you.
...


Searching, please wait... animated waiting image