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Mauberley

Ezra Pound 1885 (Hailey) – 1972 (Venice)



I
Turned from the 'eau-forte
Par Jaquemart'
To the strait head
Of Messalina:

'His true Penelope
Was Flaubert,'
And his tool
The engraver's.

Firmness,
Not the full smile,
His art, but an art
In profile;

Colourless
Pier Francesca,
Pisanello lacking the skill
To forge Achaia.

II
For three years, diabolus in the scale,
He drank ambrosia,
All passes, ANANGKE prevails,
Came end, at last, to that Arcadia.

He had moved amid her phantasmagoria,
Amid her galaxies,
NUKTIS 'AGALMA

Drifted . . . drifted precipitate,
Asking time to be rid of ...
Of his bewilderment; to designate
His new found orchid. . . .

To be certain . . . certain . . .
(Amid aerial flowers) . . . time for arrangements-
Drifted on
To the final estrangement;

Unable in the supervening blankness
To sift TO AGATHON from the chaff
Until he found his sieve . . .
Ultimately, his seismograph:

Given that is his 'fundamental passion',
This urge to convey the relation
Of eye-lid and cheek-bone
By verbal manifestations;
To present the series
Of curious heads in medallion

He had passed, inconscient, full gaze,
The wide-branded irides
And botticellian sprays implied
In their diastasis;

Which ansethesis, noted a year late,
And weighed, revealed his great affect,
(Orchid), mandate
Of Eros, a retrospect.

Mouths biting empty air,
The still stone dogs,
Caught in metamorphosis, were
Left him as epilogues.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

1:03 min read
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Ezra Pound

Ezra Weston Loomis Pound was an American expatriate poet and critic of the early modernist movement. more…

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