Anselm Hollo
from Maya (1970)



Four Stills from "The Poet"


for tom raworth

the poet, drunk, is seen
composing a poem to the revolutionaries
of the world.

it is to be a long poem

while working on page 9 he realizes
that he is stone cold sober:
he stops, goes back,
reads what he has written
starts crossing out words—
whole pages.

one line remains,
on page five. it says:

the heroes, their mouths full of

it is not
a very good line. maybe
he only forgot to cross it out.
we cannot
ask him.
he has fallen asleep.


the poet,
addresses his friends

you, my brethren
      in the dream:
remember the time of night
      we have agreed
to light our pipes of peace
remember our pact
      be gently mad children
at the appointed hour
      paint the blue sign
on your foreheads
knowing each other's rooms
      we can then be together
      no one must know
our vow not to grow
      up in their world


in the morning,
the poet looks out
& sees a quiet residential neighborhood

look at it long enough
                                      & it won't go away
talk to it long enough
                                      & it will yawn
scream at it long enough
                                           & it will dawn
upon you that rome
                                 was not overthrown
                                                                   in a day


he returns
                  to bed:
there is,