Theodore Roethke

A Rouse for Stevens

(To Be Sung in a Young Poet’s Saloon)

Wallace Stevens, what’s he done?
He can play the flitter-flad;
He can see the second sun
Spinning throughout the lordly cloud.

He’s imagination’s prince:
He can plink the skitter-bum;
How he rolls the vocables,
Brings the secret - right in Here!

Wallace, Wallace, wo ist er?
Never met him, Dutchman dear;
If I ate and drank like him,
I would be a chanticleer.

Speak it from the face out clearly:
Here’s a mensch but what can sing dandy.
Er ist niemals ausgepoopen,
Altes Wunderkind.

Roar ‘em, whore ‘em, cockalorum,
The Muses, they must all adore him,
Wallace Stevens - are we for him?
Brother, he’s our father!