Wild to Make

Poem by Marly Youmans

His neck aches. Eyes are scalded in their sockets.

For it has been a long and irksome day

With no rose petals strewn before his feet,

No lily to restore mind’s wildering,

A day without a glimpse of kingliness,

Without sunset. The light just drained away.

A little spasm in the brain says he

Has gone beyond the gate of weariness.

Still the Fool kneels in the kitchen midden,

Making a city out of broken china.

By starlight, towers and shard cottages

Of crockery are glowing, luminous

Neighborhoods for the moon: how he trembles

From the chill or else from pilfering,

The bringing something out of things that are

Not—like syllables’ juggled radiance.


American Arts Quarterly, Spring 2013, Volume 30, Number 2