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This poem is taken from PN Review 83, Volume 18 Number 3, January - February 1992.

Two Poems Philip Holmes

MUSEE CHAGALL

Between earth and heaven we inhabit
a fragile bubble, thin blue-green range
of sustaining air, a metastable state.
Chasms gulp and stretch on either hand.

Histories which would help hold us still
are at the end substantial as his clouds'
bunched air which hides and colours and reveals
our dreams: ladders, music, swaying crowds,

the bride who gathered the folds of her dress
and floated above the tumbling village
as rosy heat settled over the place
to set the heart's hidden one on edge.

Palaces and kingdoms shimmer, attaining less
structure than clouds themselves, dreams or fountains;
seen once, to be imperfectly recalled and fade,
...


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