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This poem is taken from PN Review 126, Volume 25 Number 4, March - April 1999.

Three Poems John Matthias

Two in New York

I: Easter 1912

His name was Frédéric Sauser his name
was Blaise Cendrars his name was Nineteen Twelve
his name was Eiffel Tower.

Only later Sonia Delaunay and Transiberian Prose,
later loss of a good right arm at the Marne.
His name that day it was Pâques might have been Ray -

Ray of Gourmont that Easter and everyone gone.
Nobody liturgy nobody nun nobody
anthem or song or prelate or incense or drum.

So dict nobis quid vidisti: nobody nobody there
when he woke and wrote down his name
in New York it was Fear. What could he do but go home?


II: Christmas 1929

And what could he do, Chien Andalou,
whose speech had the fire of flamenco guitar,
...


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