One of my great sorrows
is that Milton was born before I was.
I could have written brilliantly
about the ‘infinite abyss’,
hadn’t done it before me.
Ginsberg, I don’t mind so much.
His reference differed from my experience;
even his desolation was personal.
That signature made his writing great.
Still, I must admit, ‘The alchemy
of elipse’ would have escaped me.
If I’d preceded Dickinson,
I might have dreamt the lines
she penned on pain, but I doubt
my mind would have apprehended
the elegance of ‘those little anodynes
that deaden suffering’.
It little matters when Frost was born.
He was one of a kind. His lines
would work only for him…more’s the shame.
To Stevens, I would say, It’s not just
‘the mind of winter’
that has regard for Frost.
On reading, ‘through the thin frost
that gathers on the pane in empty rooms’
I pause and sigh,
that ‘only God can make a tree’.
Robert Frost, you were an oak.
Allusions were made to the following poems:
Paradise Lost Book II…’infinite abyss’…Milton
Howl…’alchemy of ellipse’…Ginsberg
The Heart Asks Pleasure First..’those little anodynes of suffering’…Dickinson
The Snow Man…’one must a mind of winter to regard the frost’…Stevens
An Old Man’s Winter Night…”‘through the thin frost… that gathers on the pane in empty rooms’ …Frost
Trees…’only God can make a tree’…Kilmer