John Berryman

Dream Song 53: He lay in the middle of the world, and twicht

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He lay in the middle of the world, and twicht.
More Sparine for Pelides,
human (half) & down here as he is,
with probably insulting mail to open
and certainly unworthy words to hear
and his unforgiving memory.

—I seldom go to films. They are too exciting,
said the Honourable Possum.
—It takes me so long to read the 'paper,
said to me one day a novelist hot as a firecracker,
because I have to identify myself with everyone in it,
including the corpses, pal.'

Kierkegaard wanted a society, to refuse to read 'papers,
and that was not, friends, his worst idea.
Tiny Hardy, toward the end, refused to say anything,
a programme adopted early on by long Housman,
and Gottfried Benn
said:—We are using our own skins for wallpaper and we cannot win.

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John Berryman