From 1989, when I was 20. The poem was intended as a jibe at an older poet whom I thought to be fussy and pedantic, but my jibe was so obscure that he took it as a tribute! And we enjoyed a kind of happy friendship thereafter.


Go not too near a House of Rose

Emily Dickinson



As Dickinson advised in so few words,

We should not try to chase the bumblebee,

Nor scale the summit of Mount Ecstasy,

Nor plagiarize the flight of phraseless birds.


I read your poem as self-indictment:

The emperor's acquaintanceship with dust.

Despite his vain insistence that she must,

Nature won't bend to suit his sentiment.


In the heavenly race for the needle's eye,

The first will be last, the sad will feel mirth:

There is no punctuation in rebirth;

No acolytes of grammar need apply.


Discrimination fails. The wind will blow

To legislate the anarchy of snow.

Poetry by Thomas DeFreitas The PoetBay support member heart!
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Written on 2018-12-04 at 04:37

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