Carl Sandburg


Paint his head against lavender shadows.
Fling stars around howsoever you choose.
The wing tips of birds circling sunset
Arches of measureless fading gates.
Put in mystery without end.
This man was mystery.
And yet at the end of your hands technique
Of fixing mystery around a head,
Let up on the mystery . Mix in among the
Lavender shadows the gorilla far back
And the jungle cry of readiness for death
Or struggle — and the clean breeds who live on
In the underbrush. Mix in farther back yet
Breeds out of the slime of the sea.
Put in a high green of a restless sea.
Insinuate chlorine and mystic salts,
The make-up of vertebrates,
The long highway of mammals who chew
Their victims and feed their children
From milk at a breast. Let him cry from silence
How the fathers and the women went hungry
And battled hunger and tore each other’s jugulars
Over land and women, laughter and language.
Put in mystery without end. Then add mystery.