PRISM international

Prism international Prism international Jul 31, 1969

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Summer, ig6g
L° O
ROSER*        L
RaL0? esOr  STAFF
editor  Jacob Zilber
associate editors   Robert Harlow
Douglas Bankson
/. Michael Yates
art editor  Clive Cope
PRISM international is a journal of contemporary writing, published three times
a year by the University of British Columbia. Annual subscriptions are $5.00,
single copies $1.75, obtainable by writing to PRISM, c/o Creative Writing,
U.B.C, Vancouver 8, B.C.
MSS should be sent to the Editors at the same address and must be accompanied by a self-addressed envelope and Canadian or unattached U.S. stamps,
or commonwealth or international reply coupons. PRISM
Do The Li'l Chil' Grieve?
He Do.
Bitter Fragrance
We Three, You and I
Three Poems
Obscene Astrology
Two Poems
In The City
Mes Tribulations En Russie
Other Landscapes, Other Ways
Three Poems
Three Poems
Three Poems
to Nancy on what concerns us
Picture Poem
Two Poems
Three Illustrated Poems
55 From White Motor
A Brush With
Underground Poets
From "Marimarusa,"
a polar sonnet
Two Poems
Three Poems
Spring Fever 104.9
Written Upon the Door
Northwest Winter
Two Poems
Four Poems
"Half-Kissed Kiss"
The Reading
Two Poems
Two Poems
The Death of Evelyn Morrison
Books and Periodicals Received
The photo cover is a poem by Elizabeth Gourlay, whose work has appeared
in Prism international and other journals. Her first poetry volume, Motions,
Dreams & Aberrations, was recently brought out by Morriss Printing Company
Ltd., Victoria. Harry H. Taylor has published in various little magazines in the United
States, and Pleasures of Love, a collection of his stories, is being brought out in
Autumn by Windfall Press, Chicago. He teaches English at Ball State University in Indiana.
George-Trevelyan Lwyd came on board at the last minute,
looking anxious and slightly harried. He was still handsome, in his
early fifties, but he had spent his life chasing women, and he now
had the contained, half-watchful air of a man who carefully hoards
his energies.
George opened his cabin door, prepared to lie down for an hour,
but a young woman in a cool white sheath was combing her long,
bluish-black hair out in front of a mirror. When she saw George,
she turned, the comb still in her hand.
He remembered the scene later — like a little shadow-play, almost
without words. He phoned the steward, and while they waited for
the mistake to be straightened out, he took her down to have a
drink in the first lounge he could find.
She was charming, sweet, and shy, so shy that he could hardly
get her to talk, but at the same time she did not appear to be insecure, or frightened of him. She seemed to be mantled in a removed,
untroubled unawareness that reminded him of the kind of purity
which only exists in children's literature.
When their drinks came — the ship's specialty, something strong
and dark and probably vicious under the various pieces of fruit —
she brightened for a moment. She looked up at him for the first time,
her eyes the color of half-opaque sea-mist. "I love trying new drinks,
don't you? I'm always curious to see what they'll come up with
George smiled. He realized that she probably had lots of little
things to say along this line, like every woman. George would let her go on until she was enumerating the countless reasons why she
couldn't sleep with him. He would listen quietly, without arguing,
and when she was through, he would finally ransack her with great
The steward entered the lounge with her hand-luggage. He stood
at the door, unable to focus in the dimness.
"Oh," she said, "there he is now. They've located my room. I'm
so sorry if I put you out, but I could have sworn I was in the right
George rose to signal the steward, but she was already on her feet,
crossing the room. George followed, but the headwaiter sprang
forward with the bill, and when George got that cleared, the girl
and the steward were gone. He couldn't find them anywhere on the
empty deck in the mist.
George woke in the grey light, feeling the smoothly rolling water
beneath him. The day was cold, the air icy. He shaved, bathed and
dressed with great care before he went down to breakfast.
He was aware of the sea-quiet in the dining-room, a suspension
which was reinforced with the occasional sound of a fork against a
plate, or the subdued voices of the waiters as they moved among the
"Do you have orange juice? I mean by this orange juice from
"Yes, sir."
"Yes, sir."
"All right, orange juice. Then scrambled eggs."
"Yes, sir."
"Do you have English muffins?"
"Yes, sir."
"When I came up, I couldn't get English muffins."
"We have them now, sir."
"I'll have English muffins, then — if they have not disappeared
by the time you get back to that mysterious kitchen of yours. Very
lightly toasted, please. And then perhaps a coarse, very bitter marmalade. Will you faithfully promise me very coarse, very bitter
"Yes, sir. Would you like your coffee now?"
"Coffee? I don't remember mentioning coffee? Have you put
coffee down anywhere on that pad?"
"No, sir." "But, do you know, I believe I'll have a cold glass of milk."
George went back to his cabin after breakfast. He lit a cigarette
and dialed for the steward. A stranger appeared.
"I'm looking for the uniformed official who was on duty last
night," George said, "during the boarding hours."
"I was on then, sir."
"Do you remember me? Do you remember the mix-up?"
"No, sir."
"All right, now look: We're going to begin from the very
beginning. We're going to take things one step at a time. Do you
think we might try? Do you think it's worth a chance?"
"Yes, sir."
"All right. Somebody put a young woman in here by mistake,
during the usual boarding confusion, during your usual chaos,
during your usual hours of madness, and when I rung for the
steward, I got one — one came, all right, as unlikely as this may
seem — and he changed her room. He presumably put her where
she originally belonged. Have you followed me so far?"
"Yes, sir."
"Fine. Who was this? Who would the steward be?"
"I don't know, sir. There must be some — "
"Yes, sir."
"Then do you think that you might unconfuse the confusion, and,
by making a few reasonable inquiries, or perhaps by great dint of
official effort, find out just who the steward was?"
"I can try, sir."
"Well, would you do that? Would you like to put all your many
resources together and try that? Because if we can find the steward,
he might just possibly remember where he has put the girl this time.
He might just possibly remember where he has most recently mislaid
"Yes, sir."
"Because if the captain can dispense with your services for awhile,
if the captain can let someone else actually steer the ship, we might
get a little old-fashioned stewarding in."
The day stayed bad. The sky grew dimmer in the early afternoon.
The moon stayed weirdly visible, more concrete than the faded sun,
and by two o'clock the ship's lights were on.
George searched for the girl among the lounges and the bars. "Which is worse on the heart, would you say, coffee or liquor?"
he asked the bartender.
The middle-age bartender was in a short red jacket with brass
buttons. He looked Italian or French or Jewish. He had a receding
hair-line which emphasized his beautifully-shaped, sun-tanned skull.
He was polishing glasses. He shrugged.
"Well? Go ahead, guess."
"Liquor. I'm no doctor, though."
"Wrong. It's coffee. Interestingly enough, it's coffee."
The bartender shrugged again.
"You're going to do yourself out of a lot of business. I know a
lot of men these days walking around with hearts."
"I don't make the profits. I just wear the red jacket."
"I went up to the States for a physical. A complete check-up. It
cost me a hundred dollars. The first one I've had in — oh — must
be fifteen years. I felt fine, too. I felt great. But I went up there for
a physical, went a thousand miles over water, to find out that I have
a heart condition. And what am I to think about that? Do you know
what I wonder? Do you know what I wonder right now?"
"No," the bartender said, "I can't guess."
"Well, I wonder if I would have had a heart condition if I
hadn't been told about it."
"I wonder if I would have had a heart condition if I hadn't been
told about it. Because it's the old tree-falling-in-the-forest argument
again, isn't it?"
The bartender was putting the glasses away on a shelf. "You need
good medical advice for these things," he said.
George paused in the doorway of a recreation lounge where two
middle-age couples were playing cards. They were wearing cruise
clothes, but the women had thrown woolen sweaters across their
shoulders, the sweater arms dangling at their sides. They sat with
their arms crossed, their cards in their hands lying fanned out face
down against their elbows.
"I promised while we were down there to buy Margaret one of
those lovely Guatemalan skirts."
"We're not going to Guatemala, Mother. We aren't even heading
in that direction."
The woman was looking at her cards. "I'm not going to step into
one of those skirts, of course, but you know my Margaret—-just
bone. She's nothing but bone, poor dear." "It's your bid, Mother."
The woman looked over her cards, into space. "Oh, I don't know.
Should I? Oh well, for goodness sakes, no, I guess not, not with this
hand. All right, yes. Pass... I'll pass," she said. "Isn't it cold,
though? Isn't it nasty? Why it's warmer home, down by us."
The waiter was standing at George's cabin door with a tray of
"Come in, come in!" George shouted. "I invented this drink. I
take great pride in it, and I want to show you how it's put together.
I call it 'Decline and Fall.' Put the tray down over there, will you?
Now watch. I want you to watch this very carefully. We use one
part Spanish cider, one part Spanish brandy, one part creme
d'cacao, one part rum. Always use this Haitian brand. Don't think
it will be the same drink without it — not 'Decline and Fall.' Oh,
yes, crushed ice. I wouldn't want you to try serving it without
crushed ice."
The waiter looked at the performance with a dubious air. "Very
tempting, very tasty, I'm sure, sir," he said.
"Well, you won't know until you try it. Try it!"
"Oh, I can't."
"I'm on duty, sir."
"All right, all right, all right, out of here! Back to work. Man the
helm. Stride the deck. Box the compass. Shoot the sun. Full steam
ahead. Keep us on even course!"
When the waiter had shut the door, George poured the mess
down the sink.
The next morning, the second out, the air was warmer; by early
afternoon the sun was pretty strong — hardly cruise weather yet,
but the passengers appeared from their lairs and holes, stood around
in groups on deck, cluttered up the stairs, and filled the shuffieboard
courts — old ladies dangerous with sticks.
George wandered around through the activity looking for the girl.
He narrowly skirted the hearts of things, the centers of energy. Social
directors with whistles around their necks were briskly distributing
mimeographed lists, forming groups, calling out names.
"Now listen, everybody, please," a director was saying. "Now
listen, everybody, please, may I have your attention!"
George almost collided with a woman who was carrying a shuffle-
board stick. She had short, darkish red hair and a big, puffy, freckled
8 face. She was probably in her late thirties or even possibly early
forties. She was wearing one of those mannish, bulky slack suits that
had first appeared after World War II, and were now briefly back.
However, George was staring at her eyes -— the color of half-opaque
The woman held her shuffieboard stick out awkwardly toward
George. "I've got this insurance around here," she said. "I found
out that they'll leave you alone if you check out the sporting equipment; they won't try to find a group for you if you look busy. On
the last cruise I checked out a shuffieboard stick every morning and
then parked it beside me in a bar some place."
"Ah, I see," George said, still looking at her eyes.
"Well, what about it? What about finding a bar?"
"Sorry. I have to find someone."
George could not get away from her. He ran into the woman
several times in the afternoon, while he was looking for the girl.
The woman smiled in his direction, from the other side of a group,
and held up her shuffieboard stick. George waved back and changed
course. He found her later in the dining-room, eating alone, but she
did not look up this time, and he left as soon as he had finished his
dinner. He ran into her in the bar that evening, sitting alone with
the shuffieboard stick beside her. She moved the shuffieboard stick
over and beckoned to him. He couldn't find an empty place anywhere else, and while he later remembered drinking with her in the
bar, he did not remember when they had decided to go back to his
"I'm a teacher," she said, looking at George's bed, "that is, if I
have to tell anyone. It's all over me, isn't it -— the teaching game?"
George had had his share of odd ball bar-flies. He lit a cigarette
and rang for drinks while she went on talking.
"I'm one of those aging, slightly non-virginal bachelor-girl types
who go on tours looking for something, looking for almost anything,
but you know what we wind up with, don't you? We wind up
coming back loaded down with little sea horses in plastic paper
weights, imitation shrunken heads with real hair, shells painted with
scenes of foreign places, blow fish with light bulbs inside — "
"I'm half in love with somebody," George said, looking at her
eyes. "Isn't that funny? Isn't that pretty funny? I've been married
three times; I've got children scattered around in good schools from
coast to coast; but I'm half in love with a girl I met just once, for a
few seconds. I don't even know her name. Why, do you know, I
don't even know what she looks like undressed. I must have drunk a fatal potion because I haven't felt the same since. I haven't felt at
aU well..."
"Confidences, confidences," she said, unbuttoning, "but we live,
after all, in very personal times, very personal times."
George was unexpectedly pleased when he saw her without the
slack suit, just before she doused the lamp. He realized now that
nobody could have been built like the suit, and he found comfort
where he found comfort, anyway, any way.
He was working on bits and pieces when the waiter knocked with
their drinks. "Get back to the bridge," George shouted, through the
door. "Get back to the bridge and man the helm before we all go
George woke in the middle of the night feeling cold. He tore at
the edges of the covers several times, trying to get arranged right,
but even under the covers his bones felt cold, as if his body heat were
steadily dropping.
Then the moon cast a queer light, misshaping things. The woman
was up, getting dressed, getting ready to go back to her cabin. He
looked at the haggish, weary face, the hair skimpy and thin, the
parted mouth, which, in the moon-shadow, looked as if it did not
have teeth. He shut his eyes quickly, and when he opened them
again, she was gone.
George woke late the next morning, on the third day. He felt less
real than the water trembling in the glass beside his bed, the movement of the sea, the unexpected warmth, the laughter overhead on
deck, the heavy, rotating spindles in the hold, the steady, weighty,
ineluctable course of the ship.
George wasn't a deeply reflective man, but he was sometimes
subject to strong moods like underwater currents, and since he had
fought sadness, lassitude, melancholy and despair before, he was not
particularly worried.
"I have answers," he said.
He shaved with great care, chose an imported cologne, and
hesitated in front of his wardrobe. He could often change his mood
according to what he wore, and since the old actor, the Tired Flesh,
was about to stage a come-back, he chose a two-hundred-dollar
sports jacket, a soft blue linen shirt, and a decidedly happy cravat.
He was looking forward to a good breakfast, but everything went
wrong in the dining-room, increasing his sense of loss and disorientation. When he arrived, nobody bothered to show him to his seat, but
when he finally chose a table without help, a waiter was on him in
io a minute. "You can't sit there," he said, and ushered him instead to
a table in the corner which was filled with dirty dishes, the remains
of somebody else's breakfast.
George had to wait for half an hour before a surly bus boy finally
wandered over to clear away the mess. George decided to cheer him
up. "You have a busy night at the helm?" he asked. "Did you keep
us on course all right?" The boy looked at him darkly, without
immediately answering, but as he turned away with the tray, he said,
under his breath, "Screw you, Mac."
George still felt cold later up on deck. He felt the sun on his
hands, the air's languid warmth, but he was cold. He sat back in a
deck chair, threw a blanket across his legs, and closed his eyes, but
he could not sleep. He opened his eyes from time-to-time to stare at
the flickering water-lights on the deck ceiling overhead. A bell rang
somewhere, and then the silence again. He heard a door open and
close behind him. He could not get comfortable. He decided that
he needed a drink, and he descended the stairs, down one flight
toward his favorite bar.
The dimness inside was comforting. The place was quiet, like a
church. Most of the passengers were up on deck, and the only sign
of life here, besides the bartender, was the young couple behind him,
toward his left — two pleasant-looking lesbians who were sharing a
drink. They looked like twins; both bobbed heads blonde; and, in
shorts, their legs were identically browned. George asked the bartender for a martini because gin usually warmed him first, and as
he considered the strangeness and diversity of human love trying to
assert itself against all odds, against all sense, he felt better — more
A family group came next, charging through the swinging doors
laughing and talking. The mother was big, florid, and fatty, and she
was wearing one of those large, cartwheel-type picture-book hats
which appear every other generation or so. She came in first, blindly,
removed her sunglasses, and then turned to wave the others through,
like a guide checking to see if the coast was clear. She had several
other women in tow, friends or possibly relatives, and then last, the
man and the boy. The man was not particularly small, but in that
group he looked lost. He was awkwardly carrying a bakery box by
the string. The boy was six or seven.
George moved down several bar stools, closer to the lesbians'
corner, to get away from the commotion. He tried his martini, and
when he was satisfied that it was dry enough, that it was going to do,
he put the glass down and looked in the mirror. He was straightening
ii his cravat when he accidentally caught in the mirror the eye of one
of the lesbians. He lowered his gaze and went back to his drink.
The family group got their drinks set up, and while these were
being passed around, the mother was trying to light a birthday cake
with a cigarette-lighter. However, the lighter's slant was wrong; the
flame soared without touching the candles, and the woman finally
borrowed matches from the bartender. Then, while the candles were
weakly burning, the group sang to the boy.
"Happy birthday to you,
Happy birthday to you;
Happy birth-day, dear Georg~ee,
Happy birth-day to youuuu!"
George looked in the mirror again, and when he saw the lesbian's
face again, knit into a frown, he realized she was disapproving; he
raised his brows and shrugged, a gesture meant to convey their
mutual irritation.
The lesbian jumped up, knocking her chair over backwards.
"Hey, bartender," she yelled in a raucous voice, "do we have to put
up with passes from this old fag?"
"Listen," the bartender said, evidentiy confusing George with
someone else, "I've had all the trouble I want from you. I want you
out of here — now!"
George was still looking in the mirror. He cleared his throat and
straightened his cravat. Still not satisfied with it, he got off the bar
stool, and, everybody watching, he crossed the room and went
through the swinging door. The voices started again when the door
closed behind him.
He passed the swimming pool on the way back to his cabin. The
area was cluttered with oiled, glistening bodies lying on beach
blankets and on deck chairs, straw hats over the faces, the hands
clasped across the stomachs, the feet up, showing blunt toes, the
pale bottoms of the in-steps exposed. The ship, heavy with this
burden of sun-bathers, cruised slowly through the wrinkled, green
water with an almost imperceptible motion.
George felt a flash of pain across his chest. He stumbled, almost
fell, and caught a rail. He held onto the warm rail for a moment,
breathing with difficulty, and when his dizzyness finally passed, he
slowly made his way back to his cabin by keeping in the shade and
avoiding the glare.
When he opened the door, he saw the girl standing in the middle
of his cabin, the girl with the eyes the color of half- opaque sea-mist.
12 She was wearing an open terry-cloth robe, but that was all. She was
so heavily made-up he hardly recognized her, and when she raised
her arms, further parting the robe, he saw that her nipples were
painted with a dark, red caky substance.
"I was in the right cabin, after all, wasn't I, George? Isn't that
funny? I was in the right cabin, after all."
George put his arms across his face to protect himself. "No!" he
said, "no, please — ," but he fell down at the same time.
13 Three Poems by Louis Aragon
Translated from the French by Joachim Neugroschel
This morning the rose paper in my hotel room was replaced
By a frog paper    Though
No one came in except for
A memory wearing a very cool pure-white dress
Those batrachians have formed a league against
The luminous spectre to drive it out of my mind
We no longer get on well    What an awful racket
Even the Toad Telephone that cro
My pencil hiding    However
I recall the deserted road between the strange gardens
Being demolished
No one would recognize the Parisian neighborhood
White sphinxes have come cropping up from the moss toward the sky
Next in the alley
Like the postman's door-to-door race
Like resumptions of breathing in sobs
At our feet the Seine looked like
An upturned teapot
What looked like cherries on the hat
What looked like love in the eyes
Her two hands were flame and snow
And when she had poured the alcohol of the conflagration
On my mouth
I greeted her by name    Provocation
To demoralization
The government came crashing down
In a hawthorn thicket
A general strike unfurled as far as the eye could see
Under the combined influence of the moon and cephalalgy
The murderers were gone with the perspective of the wind
The victim hung on the grill like a steak
A deadly heat
Better see whether the barracks heard funny stories
Liquor came gushing through the rooftop skylights
The subway came out from the ground to take a breather
When suddenly there appeared
At a curve in the road
A tiny donkey hauling a car
Decorated for the flower battle
First prize for the whole town
And the neighboring towns
I abandoned hope next to a clockwork
As the ax chopped off the last minute
A large number of people had gathered for the execution
The children perching on shoulders
Made gestures of joy and fear
In another street at the seashore
The earth was turning in the sea air
A girl singing a nerve-wracking hit-tune
Revealed a bit of her softer-than-life skin
There was hard killing everywhere
Horses escaping into elevators
Laughed like human people
It was a country of wounds where devouring winds blew
Jangled nerves were so wide-spread
That the trees shattered in the hands of men
Like so many matches
People left their homes no longer caring
How can you wear last night's clothes
Put your pianos on the sidewalk while waiting for rain
Wouldn't it be fantastic to die on a day like today
The city you live in is moving off
So tiny in your memory
16 Hand me the binoculars so that I can take one last look
At the laundry drying in the windows
Paradise everything's scattered Now is the time
When no one can speak the name of whoever he's touching
At least until the evening scent which is foreign to me
Like Armenian paper
Or a new song that everyone knows already
Nothing binds me here not even the future
The artillery shell that could contain me hasn't been born
How small the sky can be at the end of a day
Its horizons are false its doors are boarded up
The moon truly believes that the dogs will bite it
I drive out the stars with my hand
Nocturnal flies don't pounce upon my heart
You can always shout Eyes front! to me
Captains of habit and night
I break loose indefinitely under the hat of the infinite
Don't bother waiting for me at my illusory hang-outs
Louis Aragon is the renowned French poet and leading exponent of dadaism
and surrealism. His published works include seven novels and numerous books
of poetry. Joachim Neugroschel lives in New York, where he co-edits Extensions. His translation of Hugo Friedrich's Struktur der Modernen Lyrik is soon
to be released by Pegasus Press.
Our society is sick
I hear everyone declare.
It is sick, every
society is sick.
There is not enough bread
and too many guitars.
Everytime people gather
something goes wrong.
At birth man is finished.
We want surrealism
because realism is too real.
We scratch our heads
covered with sores
and laugh at psychologists.
There is nothing that
helps. Man is just not
what we want him to be.
We need medicine for
head sores, for that
cough in our chest, for
old crippled Bradley who
knows surrealism is a toy
for the mind — something a
rich banker buys for his son.
Our great cities are
submarines someone forgot
to build. Workers
duplicate each movement
of the day, day after day
duplicated until death.
In the stockyards trained
steers lead other steers to
18 Our great cities are being
destroyed by men with too much
money and by revolutionaries
nursed on too many dreams
and not enough insight. They
want us back in the plains
and deserts which we left to
build cities and fight for things
we don't understand until
nothing is left but soul.
Yes, I suppose our society
has a sickness to which we
are adjusted. It is felt
in the pulse of our railroads
and revolving doors, our
elevators and escalators, our
buses, buildings and baby
carriages — it is felt
in the pulse of the sun.
At birth man is finished.
Douglas Blazek has two poetry books out from Analecta Press and Quixote
Press. Three more will be printed by Runcible Spoon Press and Toad Press; and
anthologies in Europe, South America and the U.S. include his work. He lives
in San Francisco.
19 Two Poems by Alain Borne
Translated from the French by Derk Wynand
I will love no one
I traverse the leaves of trees
and even their trunks
I become transparence, before long, absence
before long, a thousand times nothing
I knock my brow on pavement
on stars on faces on sexes
on birds, on flowers
on the pensive hand of God.
I write a poem
I still evade my death by writing a poem
I will not overstep myself for I'm afraid
I will not help myself however
against my tall love who has no sex at all.
I write a poem to die more gently
to leave behind a kind of foliage
so eyes that see my little autumn
will wonder whether a bit of sap
remains in the tree.
Go my tree go
beat your wings my bird
the stone is ripe
the axe is ripe
the hand is ripe
that has to kill you.
I learn the bitter algebra of life
the total is always zero.
Take don't take
Eat don't eat
taste a lip a head of hair a sex
or don't taste anything
at the end you will always be the cold centre
of a marguerite whose every petal is a worm.
Kill don't kill
Believe in words don't believe
stuff cartridge with the most beautiful among them
and with the rifle of a poem hurl them
on to the mob, deaf and full of ears
or be the silence of silence:
to finish with the egg the hatched ember the ash
that the wind disperses and carries away.
Alain Borne, who died in 1962, is the important French author of 19 books of
poetry, whose publishers include Seghers and Gallimard.
Derk Wynand's translations of Jean Chatard appeared in 8:3. He is an M.A.
student in the Department of Creative Writing at the University of British
the war was far away he stayed
at night to watch the guns
flash it was aurora
sat in the empty bath his balls
rose up piss dribbled out no smell then wait
white he felt it slack now became cold
he was saying about the perfect movement
like dance form of immanence faulty
in moving thru it but the words shifted
thru it finely machined his body was
f ailing apart very quietly metallic sounds
he didn't wind the clock ran down faster
light expanded in slack parabola in
the room nothing to see where there was
nothing of them for a long time
the smell no vision when he woke
he saw nothing it came back to them
they were shooting during the night
close by it rolled in his sleep like waves
a noise from the body soft dull all
objects in the room he owned them each
one had a purpose what was in a shadow
had vision what was looked at watched
he had hands the hands had themselves
when they came together felt it where
were they he tried everything eyes dilated
a light turned whole areas dark with
concentration when the details came clear
22 it was thinking then he was in it
the bed full of his parts as tho he owned
them each had a use when he slept
he remembered everything wading out
of the bath like a sea he had the stink
of himself however it was his time in
all the things that were his taken together
in the room positions perfect as it
was it had nothing to do with him he was
part of the lack of them he objected
touched his hand one hand touched it was
accidental what was the exact motion of time
the war was far away the water took a long
time becoming the exact colour of light
there was nothing
in the water was a man
he was still
the water was very still
he leaned over he couldn't stop he was
moving so slowly so slowly
there was light everywhere
it was nothing
Wayne Clifford's Man in a Window and Eighteen were published by Coach
House Press in 1965 and 1966 respectively. Cummington Press brought out
Alphabook recently, and A Songbook (Press Press) appeared in Spring. He now
lives in Iowa City.
You might walk from one end
Of this land to another in ten years
With heavy shoes, luck, and papers
Bearing the right name.
But when you had done you would
Know nothing. We know nothing
Who have walked in it
Since an Ark came to rest in
The Caucasus, spilling us according
To our kinds a verst or two from
Prometheus' bones parched into sunbeams
Above the sea's gray breast,
Since the face of some dear Jew
Mottled into ikon, rose, smiled,
Burned and disappeared.
We know nothing who would know all
If dying and knowing were the same.
If knowing sprang from grieving, starving,
The accustomed drone of flesh going down
To the strokes of foes and lovers. We know
Only the pain of freedom. Who can be slave
In all this land? Amidst these fields
So vast that winter snow and summer corn
Go down to the world's doomed curving.
I was a child (imagine!) near
Odessa, and gypsies would dance there
While the soldiers watched
Uninstructed regarding dance — unsure
If dancing suited a workers' state, but
Moved by some harsh sweet clangor
In the blood which bade them dance,
They danced: under the sun, under the moon
Like wolves, their eyes red stars
Hot on the gypsy women, almost remembering
What we do not know, what our fathers
24 Dead in the square at Petrograd, raised up
To fall again in Kronstadt's virgin snow
Guessed before their souls went stalking,
(Under the sun, under the moon)
Lost in the cellars of Ekaterinburg,
Ghost-fingers stopping a child's scream,
Gone down to ashes in Mexico,
Ice-hatchets deep in their skulls,
Haunting the Kremlin wall seeking an
Absent name, any name to know.
Till a commissar saw all at once
A plot: gypsies and soft-tongued Jews,
Haute Bourgeosie with yellow teeth.
Till he cried out and the soldiers
Danced to a halt, raised their
Ignorant guns. Romany girls moaned
Ruby drops, a carpet of deepest red
Going down into Russia, into the
Land's dark flesh while
The commissar counted off our crimes.
Then evening came.     I stirred in my
Drenched bed, found my knees and
Knelt on the bloody dust of Ivan's skull,
On Catherine's widespread limbs.     Then I
Raised up what was left of my left hand
And began to walk.     To cry over Kiev
And the bones which brace her walls,
Over Moscow, the final Rome, and her
Puppet-god from Simbirsk who lies
Patched and peeled in the tomb
Of her wretched soul.
Walked and called out Brooklyn.     Paris.     Tokio.
Till Red Guards slumbering in their frozen
Earth groaned from out that priceless womb,
And tried to say Stalingrad
Which is no name at all
And slept again.     My left hand raised
Against all gods, blessing gypsies and
Passionate turncoats, scarecrows
25 Who trouble men, the soil under my
Swollen feet, cold as breath from the dead.
We do not know God; such invention
Is what we do not know.     Instead the slow
Cold roll of the Pacific where we are
Most lonely; the gasp of John Reed
Who cursed us with his love, lonely in
The Roman alphabet; the brief sweet
Treasure of Spain's perjured hills, and
The nameless streets of Budapest where
We do not know of dancing.
Walking north into the great beast's guts
Of silent Siberia, I found the ghosts
Of empty towns under a century's snow,
Muzhik's laughter
Like icecycles hung from the sky,
Bells with their clappers frozen between
Strokes of an Easter dawn,
And shadowed poles heavy with wire,
Monuments to those outcast
Standing along the railroad, sentries
Asleep; saints gone wrong.     Down again
To the Ukraine, shoes cracked, coughing
Phantom dust of some vanished Germany,
Over and under it stunted wheat
Grown from the flesh of my kin.     No place
I put my broken shoe but a moan
Rose from the earth, and if, in the cold
Under the sobs, under the snow, I should
Come to invent Christ dancing against
A gypsy moon, there would be still
Souls dragging, working the depths
In great slow steps, walking below,
Without papers, and nothing to know.
John William Corrington's work has appeared in numerous journals —
Kenyon Review, Massachusetts Review, the American Literary Anthology, etc.
His latest book, The Lonesome Traveler, was published in 1968 by G. P. Put-
nams Sons. He is editor-at-large of The New Orleans Review.
A field or two, certain country roads,
A single lake, some corners, and a bar —
Even a busstop near a phonebooth where
The past has postured what tomorrow hides.
(We walk dream landscapes when we go
Orchards, parking lots, and stone
Or snow.)
For these are places not in Plato's cave,
Not found in Madame Tussaud's but outside,
Beyond all limits set by rote, where love
Can gamble, and the odds are even odd.
(Our dreamscapes shimmer in the inner
Sunlit slopes where still we pass by
The silent movie of the mind projects
The stark light in shadow which we were,
Or vistas seen through branches and our fear
Of time's intrusion into timeless acts.
(When we dream our landscapes fly,
It rains
On gravel pits and bridges where trains
Go by.)
The past, which spreads before us like a field
Full of dust and sun, haunts the heart
With all the touching that our landscapes yield:
For where we are is where we always start.
Ronald Bates' poems and translations have been in Prism international and
many other journals. He teaches English at the University of Western Ontario.
27 Mario de Andrade began the modernist movement in Brazilian poetry in the
1920's and was its leading exponent until his death in 1945. He also wrote a
novel whose English translation was entitled Fraulein. The story here marks
the first English translation from The Stories of Belazarte and is the work of
Jack E. Tomlins. He is also the translator of Andrade's important poetry
volume, Hallucinated City (Vanderbilt Press, 1968), and Associate Professor of
Portuguese at the University of New Mexico.
60 the Li'L chit' QRieve?
he 60.
Do you remember teresinha? That doll who was indirectly
involved in the murder of two men, those two brothers Aldo and
Tino, and was left with two little boys when her husband went to
jail? It looks like the price her husband's paid took the evil eye off
her: she's been the unluckiest gal on earth, but at least nobody else
has committed murder on her account, nobody else has done time
for her. Only Alfredo has been stuck in that fancy palace of a penitentiary, with nothing on his mind but those twenty years in stir his
wife made him swallow. Injustice, bitterness, desire . .. things that a
lot of folks can't easily stomach, and the result: Alfredo has got
himself one of those gigantic indigestions of despair brought on
by some of the more unsavory guests at the penitentiary. Nobody
there liked him, and the son of a gun was spending his time in the
pen on an endless, uneasy sandbed of torment. But I'm wasting time
on that guy.
Teresinha suffered, poor thing! She's still got a pretty good body,
and a bunch of those fancy-steppin' high yallers would have liked to
shack up with her even for the price of a single night. She refused at
first, because sometimes she still thought about Alfredo as her lover,
and other times she could only remember him as a killer. She was
28 just about to say "maybe," but she'd always come back to the idea of
Alfredo getting out of stir with a new knife ready to rip her guts out.
And she kept her virtue in a kind of cold fear, and got little pleasure
out of living. Teresinha would come home in a pointless rage that
she'd unleash on the first thing she saw weaker than she was. She'd
catch sight of her mother, dying on her feet of early old age, taking
five minutes to get a pair of drawers down off the clothesline, and
wham! She'd throw a pile of dirty clothes at the old girl: "Are you
going to sleep on your feet holding those drawers?!"
Then she went inside the house, if you can call that a house. It
was a cattle driver's shack, so dirty nobody could live there. I guess
you'd say two chairs, a table, and a bed was all they had. There was
a mattress on the floor where the cockroaches lived, and at night,
right in the old girl's face, they danced one hell of a fandango.
Nobody slept in the other room. They had turned it into a
kitchen, and they often went for two days without striking a match
in it. Because if they struck a match, it meant coal in the little
portable stove and some food to cook. And most of the time there
wasn't any food to cook. But that didn't put too much of a strain on
Teresinha and her mother's vocabulary: didn't they have a stove?
And to their way of thinking, that gave those few cramped cubic
feet of musty air the outlandish title of "kitchen."
It was in that shack that the gal lived with her mother and her
one little kid too many. One too many, in every sense of the word,
I'd say. One too many because, after all, what did love mean to
Teresinha, good God, living with all that injustice, wanting a man
to sleep with and not having one, forgetting about Alfredo her husband and sweetheart and thinking about another Alfredo who was
a threat to her, and her with two killings on her conscience .... And
nothing left to hold onto, just cold water, and drawers, panties, socks
filthy with a week's sweat. And besides that, she hated her customers
who were always a week behind in paying their bills. Teresinha put
up with all that. And to put the cork once and for all on the wine
bottle of desire, that damned meddlesome mother-in-law of hers
would drop in. Teresinha hated her but needed her for the ten bucks
she coughed up once a month. The old "figlia dun cane" would drop
in, acting high and mighty, because on her own she had about thirty
thousand, as far as I know. But she'd haggle with her daughter-in-
law over as little as a penny.
How could a woman with thirty years of pleasure behind her feel
love when the soul in her fine, sturdy body had long since died?
Paulino was almost four years old, and it had been eight months
29 since he'd known what it was to feel the warmth of a mother's
breast, or arms around him, or hear the words "figliuolo mio." All
those pleasures: another's lips close to his face, that little tickle that
felt so good, his mother's kiss. Yes, Paulino was one too many in that
And he was one too many all the more now, because his smart
little brother, seeing that everything really was going under, got himself a kindly guardian angel who dropped a typhus germ on the
lucky little devil's tongue. The germ got to his belly, hung on and
had children by the millions every hour. It didn't take two nights,
those microbes on the march had such a good footing, that the pavement of his guts gave in. And unbaptized, the little boy, through no
fault of his own, went off to the Umbo of the guiltless pagans. Paulino
was left over, one too many.
Obviously he could not as yet know that he was left over in this
cruel world, but he knew very well that in his house there were no
leftovers to eat. He grew hungrier and hungrier; hunger was his
food. Without understanding the mysteries of his body, he would
wake up in a fright. It was the angel — guardian angel my foot! —
it was the evil angel who awakened Paulino in the wee hours of the
night so he wouldn't die. The poor little thing would open his eyes in
the darkness of the foul-smelling room, and he half understood that
he was being eaten up from inside. At first he cried.
"Sta zito guaglionl"
What the hell "sta zito"! His hunger was getting worse. Paulino
got up on his bowlegs and, stumbling, he finally reached his mother's
bed. Bed! She had sold the big bed when she felt the noose around
her neck because the doctor was yelling for his twenty bucks for the
treatment of her foot. That or something else she might have to
offer. She could give him twenty by selling the bed. She cut the
mattress in two and put half of it on three crates. That was the bed.
Teresinha woke out of her fatigue with her son's paw slapping her
in the face. She went wild with rage. She shot her hand out in the
dark, hitting wherever she could his eyes, his stomach, wham!
Paulino rolled far off with a real need to scream his head off. But
his body remembered that once before his squalling had got him his
mother's clog heel in his mouth, and he lost all desire to yell. He
whimpered so softly that it lulled Teresinha back to sleep. Tiny,
round, rolled up like the little bugs under the rocks in the garden
that make a ball when you touch them.
His grief was so great that he ended up ignoring the hunger that
nibbled at him, and he went to sleep in pain. In the morning, with
30 the weather turning cold, his body woke again. Half forgetting why,
Paulino was surprised to see that he was sleeping on the floor, a
long way from his granny's mattress. He felt a little pain in his
shoulder, another on his knee, another on his forehead, exactly
where it rested on the floor. He paid little attention to his aches
because of the sharp pain of the cold. Frightened, he crawled on all
fours because the darkness was now alive with the phantoms of the
dawn, making the rents in the walls wink. He stirred up the cockroaches and cradled himself in the illusory warmth of his grandmother's bones. He didn't go back to sleep.
Finally, around six in the morning, he was again in touch with
life because of the bakers outside, the milkmen, men with their bellies
full of breakfast who passed in the distance, and an uneasy warmth
came to life within Paulino's body. His mother was waking up now
with the bustle of life outside. Sitting up, shaking with the morning
sensuality that drives people crazy with desire, Teresinha practically
popped from hugging her arms to her breast, her stomach, all over,
pressing one leg against the other with such force that it gave her a
pain in her kidneys. There came to life in her that impatient, pointless hatred born of virtue preserved too long at the cost of great
suffering, virtue which she herself knew would sooner or later come
to an end. She looked for her clog, as she yelled to her mother:
"Don't you know it's high time you got on your feet. Get some water
in those washtubs."
Then getting up before the two women, Paulino abandoned the
nascent warmth of his body. He went rummaging around the
kitchen because the happiest moment in his life was drawing near:
a piece of bread. And what a glorious day it was for Paulino when a
customer paid her bill or his grandmother dropped by, or something
like that, and then besides the bread, they drank coffee with sugar in
it. And burning his tongue and little pale lips, he hurriedly sipped
the hot water, sublimely delicious because it had a few drops of
coffee in it. Then he went outside to eat his bread.
He didn't go to the front of the house because that's where the
faucet, washtubs, and clotheslines were. The women were doing the
laundry and there was always a commotion: continual arguments
and harsh words. Paulino's leisure had to suffer for it. He always
ended up with his bread half-eaten, and besides he usually got a
thump on the top of his head that hurt like the very devil.
He stopped going out there. He opened the unbolted door of the
kitchen, went down the steps, and frolicked about laughing in the
joy of the cold which kept him company, among the tufts of wild
3i grass and the first clumps of cockleburs. That thicket behind the
house was his jungle. There Paulino could openly salve his pains.
Sitting on the ground or kicking at the ant holes with his heel, he
began to eat. Suddenly he almost fell over lifting his leg (ouch!)
from the ground to kill the ant which was clinging to his little ankle.
He picked up the bread which he had dropped and began his meal
again, thinking it funny that the sand which had stuck to the bread
made a scratchy sound on his teeth as he chewed.
But he didn't forget the ant. When he finished his bread, the
young warrior in him sprang up to distract his new hunger. He
looked for a stick to go ant-hunting in the jungle. And not so small
a jungle, either, because it extended all the way back to the open
field, and there was only the last vestige of a fence closing off the
lot. But Paulino never went into the field because it was too big for
him. That gigantic jungle was enough, with its nameless plants,
where even the weakest rays of the sun always got through.
Clutching a switch, he went in search of ants. He wasn't after
the tiniest ones. He would only strike the big ones. When he found
one, he chased it patiently, storming between the tangled branches
of the bushes, often emerging with a hand or leg smarting because
he had rubbed against a butterfly cocoon. Now and then he would
let the ant escape and in that way he spent hours on end playing
with the poor insect until it died.
When it died, Paulino's suffering began again: it was hunger.
The sun was overhead now, but Paulino knew that not until the
factory whistles blew would there be rice and black beans in good
times or just another piece of bread in bad times, now fortunately
rarer. Inside him raged a bitter hunger which another ant that he
had chased down could no longer assuage. He pondered his misery,
saddened by the repetition of his daily suffering. He sat on something
or other, resting his cheek in his hand, head twisted to one side, lost
in grief. Finally, in some leafy shaded spot, he learned how to sleep
off his hunger. He fell asleep. He did not dream. Flies bordered his
open mouth with wings and buzzing around the spot where a crumb
of bread had stuck. Asleep, Paulino suddenly clamped his lips shut,
squirmed, opened his contracted legs a little bit, and warmly wet in
his pants.
A short doze. He awoke long before the factory whistles blew.
His hungry mouth chewed, and he licked some of the saliva off his
lips. The scratch of sand and something almost sweet on his palate.
He got it out with his hand to see what it might be. It was two flies.
32 Yes, flies. They were strangely sweet. He popped them back onto his
tongue, sucked in their flavor, and swallowed hard.
That was how he began to deceive his hunger using anything he
could find in his jungle to swallow. It did not take long for him to
take to eating dirt: he traded the ant-hunt for picnics of moist earth.
Then he took to eating ants. Close to the little anthills he rested his
face on the ground with his tongue at the ready. When an ant
appeared, Paulino stuck out his agile tongue, snapped up the insect,
and rubbing it against the roof of his mouth, he felt the tiny roundness. He put the ball between his teeth, chomped and swallowed the
illusory spit. And what a joy when he came across a Une of nomad
ants. On all fours, with his bottom to the clouds, he licked the
ground like an anteater. He finished off a whole string of ants in
three tries.
In the hope of assuaging his hunger, Paulino descended to more
nauseating things. No, he did not descend. It was impossible to place
nausea in a hierarchy, and, as a matter of fact, the worst thing he
found to eat was an ant. But I'll have to admit that once he tried a
cockroach. He grabbed it and started chewing, more innocent than
all of you sons of nausea. But, you understand, it was food that lent
no substance. The whistle blew, and the rice and black beans found
Paulino stuffed with illusions, sated. He grew very thin, turned
darker than a winter's day.
Teresinha didn't notice. The hobble on her virtue was now so
worn that the time had come for the girl to break loose and run free.
That was when Paulino got a beating all over his body, all at once
it seemed, the blows falling where they might. When she came home
now it was always with Fernandez, a hauler. He was a young man
of good background, wild, a little crude, and very energetic. He was
probably twenty-five, if that, and he was nice to the old lady, you
know why. The hobble snapped. When he could carry the laundry
for her on his cart, he even dropped by the house, came in without
so much as a by-your-leave, and Teresinha offered him coffee along
with her consent. The old lady, dirtying her tongue with the most
incomprehensible dirty words she knew, hightailed it to the kitchen
to sleep with Paulino who was frightened by it all.
At any rate, the chow got better and his little belly came to know
the rare delight of macaroni. Still he was terribly afraid of the man.
Fernandez made much over him that first time he came and when
he came out of the bedroom in the morning, and they were all
drinking their coffee together, Paulino, growing confident, started
33 to play with one of the man's long legs. But for that he got a box on
his ear that hurt for a long time.
Obviously, the mother-in-law was sure to find out about it all.
She did and she came running. Teresinha put on airs, said good
morning to her, and the fat mulatto woman answered with two
rocks which she held in her hand. But now Teresinha didn't need
her mother-in-law and she stood up to her like a cornered weasel. A
real knock-down-drag-out. Paulino was too scared to run away,
because the old lady kept pointing at him and saying "my gran'
baby" over and over again. And she ordered Teresinha to mend her
ways because she wasn't about to support the carryin'-on of no Wop
bitch shackin' up with no Spic. Teresinha screamed back that a Spic
was better than a Brazilian any day, you can bet, you daughter of
a nigger, mother of a killer. I don't need you, you hear? Nigger, fat
nigger, mother of a killer!
"You're the mother of a killer, you bitch! You brought misery on
my son, damn you, you Wop bitch."
"Get out of here, you mother of a killer. You never cared nothing about your grandbaby. Now you come in here with your nose in
the air. Take your grandbaby if you want him."
"I will take 'im. Poor little innocent baby don' know what kind o'
mother he have. You bitch, you bitch."
She snatched Paulino up — he was kicking — and stomped out,
adjusting her Sunday shawl in the midst of the neighbor women, so
unaccustomed to such a hubbub at high noon. She turned around,
though, taking advantage of the crowd to show off how good she
"Listen, all o' you, now. I ain't gwina pay no mo' rent fo' nobody,
you heah! I done take care o' you 'cause you was my mis'able son's
woman. But I ain' runnin' no stable for no breedin' mare."
Teresinha, mad with hatred, was already looking around to find
a stick, anything, to kill the old mulatto lady with. And the old
woman found it wiser to beat it once and for all, in triumph, ploom,
Paulino rocked back and forth on that warm flesh. He was afraid
and crying; he didn't know anything about fife, and that street
which he had never seen before, all those people, that strange
woman and him without his mama, with no bread, no jungle, no
granny . . . that's all he knew about, for heaven's sake. He was so
miserable! He was terribly afraid in his blue jumper. And besides
that, he couldn't cry as he would have liked because he had noticed
that the old lady was wearing heavy shoes with big heels, worse
34 than the heels on a clog. That heel would really hurt if it smashed
into your teeth and ripped your lip open. So horrified, Paulino practically stuck both his little hands into his mouth, as he quite artistically invented a trumpet-mute.
With her big warm hand she touched his little head, straightening
it on its rubbery neck. It was delicious to be carried in those good
arms, with the shawl lending even more warmth to make him happy.
And the old woman looked at him with comforting pity in her eyes.
Good Lord, that must have been delicious! It was a hint of tenderness to Paulino. The old woman hugged him to her breast, pressed
her face to his, then kissed him over and over, revealing an even
greater mystery to the little child.
Paulino tried to compose himself. For the first time in his life, the
idea of the future stretched out in his mind to include the following
day. Paulino felt that he was protected and on the next day there
would be coffee with sugar for sure. Hadn't the old woman put her
mouth next to his face, and hadn't she given him that smack that
sounded so good? That she had. And Paulino's thoughts turned to
the following day, where he pictured a huge cup as big as the old
woman, filled to the brim with coffee and sugar. He started to laugh
at her two charitable tears; but just as one tear fell, he saw a shoe
loom up and grow and grow till it had a heel the size of the old
woman herself. Paulino started whimpering again just as he had on
those nights when his sobbing had lulled Teresinha to sleep.
"Woah, enough cryin' now. You walk a little while, heah?"
The heel of the shoe grew enormously until it became the smokestack across the way. Paulino's whimpering stopped, but he was still
catching his breath out of fright. They reached the house.
This was a real house. You went in through a little garden with
blooms, and it made you feel like pulling up all the straw-flowers.
And once up the steps, there was a room with two big portraits on
the wall. A man and a lady who was the same as the old woman.
Chairs, a huge chair big enough to hold many people. On the little
table in the middle of the room, a vase with a pink flower that never
wilted. And those little white doilies on the chairs and table which
would surely confuse you if you tried to count all the tassels.
The rest of the house amazed the little expatriate in the same way.
It was then that the two pretty girls appeared who always wore navy
blue woolen skirts and white blouses. They looked sternly in his
direction. Four black eyes looked him up and down and wham! It
35 was like a crashing blow against Paulino's soul. He was stupefied,
motionless, glued to the floor.
A terrible argument followed. I don't know what the old woman
said, but one of the school girls answered crossly. The old woman
snapped at her sharply and said something about "my little gran'-
baby." The other girl shouted back and a storm of "my little gran'-
baby" and "your little gran'baby" flashed over Paulino's head. When
there were no more sharps for the three voices to go up, the old
woman slapped the daughter who was standing in front of her and
the other one, on the run, barely escaped being hit on the head by
a flying spoon.
Paulino's imagination could not invent terrors worse than these.
And the funny thing is that terror, for the first time, awakened his
intelligence. The idea of the future, which a short time before had
included the following day, lengthened even more; and Paulino
realized that he would spend all the next day between rage and ill
treatment, and the next day, and the day after that; and all the next
days, in the same way, would go on forever. It's obvious: without
adding up the numbers, more than three thousand years of days
which he would have to suffer through were jumbled in the little
boy's frightened mind.
"Go pick up that spoon."
His little bowlegs churned, God knows how, and Paulino picked
the spoon up from the floor and gave it to the old woman. She took
it from him and went inside. The porch was empty now. Everything
had been settled, and the afternoon shadows quickly stole in, blurring all those strange unknown things. Only the table in the middle
of the room stood out clearly, outlined in red and white. Paulino
leaned against one of its legs. He trembled with fear. A delicious
odor came from outside, and from the darkness of the porch a tiny
sound (tic-toe) regulated Paulino's sensations. He sat on the floor.
A great serenity invaded his extenuated thoughts: he was free from
the old woman's heel. She wasn't at all like his mother. When she
was angry, she didn't throw her shoe, only a tiny spoon, shining
silvery; Paulino drew himself into a knot and rested his head on the
floor. He was very sleepy from all those weary thoughts. He was no
longer in danger of being hit in the teeth by a clog; the fat old
mulatto woman threw only a silver spoon. Paulino didn't know
whether or not a spoon would hurt if it hit him. He calmly fell
"Git up. What's goin' on heah? The way this baby must've
suffered, Margot! Jes look how skinny he is!"
36 "Lordie! With his mama carryin' on, partyin' day and night,
what do you expeck!"
"Margot, you know for sure what 'bitch' means, don' you? I think
maybe people will call Paulino a son of a bitch, don' you?"
They laughed.
"Sen' Paulino in heah to eat his breakfas'."
"Go on in, honey."
His bowlegs moved more quickly now. A kitchen almost too small
to cuss a cat in. The good old woman tugged at the door mat with
her foot.
"Sit down theah and eat everything, you heah."
It was rice and black beans. Paulino saw the old woman disappear
with the meat through the porch door. A four-year-old baby doesn't
eat meat, the old woman probably thought. She was always in hot
water, anyway, what with the expense of bringing up her two
Paulino's wretched life had changed, but he was miserable just
the same. The food got much better and he was no longer in need,
but Paulino was being pursued by the vices he had learned in his
jungle. The fat old mulatto woman no longer showed him those
hints of tenderness as she had on that first day. She was one of those
women whose vital mechanism departs but little from the mere
fulfillment of duty. That first kiss had been sincere, but only within
the bounds of tragedy. The tragedy was ended, and for her, tenderness was also ended. In the meanwhile, Paulino was left with a
craving for those caresses he would have come to love.
He tried to worm his way into the girls' good graces, but they
were always mad at him; and when they could, they pinched him.
Just the same, the younger of the two, Nininha, who was impetuously curious and never got the same good grades as Margot in
school, had taken it upon herself to give Paulino his bath. When
Saturday came, the little boy, scared half to death and afraid of
being pinched, felt the caresses of a pretty and burning face rubbing
against his little body. That always ended with Nininha in a brutish
rage, dressing him quickly in his little shirt, hurting him, ("Stand up
straight, you little pest,") and suddenly giving him a pinch that
smarted like the devil, Lordie Lord!
Paulino went down the kitchen steps, through the little hallway
that opened onto the front garden, forcefully tugged at the door
that was always bolted, sat down with his hand on his cheek, his
37 little head twisted to one side, and remained there watching the
world go by.
And so, between pinches and harsh words that he didn't understand at all, ("addle-brained child," "killer's son,") he also went by
the wayside like the world: thin, dark, dull, weaker and weaker.
But what could he do? He drank his coffee, and already they were
telling him to go outside and eat his bread in the yard, because if he
didn't — little pig — he would mess up the whole house. He went to
the yard, and the earth was so moist that it was a terrible temptation. But it never occurred to him that it was a temptation: no
whack, no hurled spoon had prohibited his eating the earth. Quick
as a flash he chewed a little of it and swallowed. He chewed a little
more and swallowed again. And always around ten in the morning,
with the rush of the school girls upsetting the serenity of his life, he
had to sit on the scratchy door mat and swallow his rice and beans
in unbearable boredom.
"Holy Virgin Mary, that chil' don' eat nothin'! See the way he
look at his food. Why you done git dirt all over yo' face like dat, you
Paulino was afraid, and instinct told him to swallow hard as he
waited for the spoon that was never thrown. This time, however, the
old woman had a sudden revelation.
"You been . . . ! You done been eatin' dirt ain' you? Lemme see!"
She pulled Paulino to the kitchen door, and with those two
enormous hands which burned him they were so hot:
"Open yo' mouf, chil'!"
And she pulled his lips wide apart. Dirt on his teeth, on his gums.
"Open yo' mouf, I done top you!"
And her fingers pried open his dirty little mouth and pulled his
tongue all the way out. It was the color of dirt. I can't describe to
you the beating Paulino got. It began with a smack on his open
mouth, which made a funny sound, pam!, and I don't know how to
tell you how it ended: a mixture of blows, pinches, smacks. And a
chewing-out which, after all, to a child is as good as a beating.
Then it was that Paulino's crudest martyrdom began. Not a one
of the women would allow him to stay inside the house; he virtually
had to live outside in the yard. Before he got his slice of bread, he
always got a threatening tongue-lashing, and a good one, too. I
give you my word. Paulino went down the steps in a state of
complete perplexity, feeling that the whole world was whipping him
down. And then? He ate up the bread, and suddenly there was all
that dirt, openly offering itself to him. But those three female
38 pinchers wouldn't let him eat the delicious earth. What a temptation
for the little darling: he wanted to eat some of it, but he could not.
He could, but if he did he would have to submit himself to the old
woman's coarse finger probing around inside his little mouth. Should
he eat some or shouldn't he? He fled from temptation, climbed the
steps and sat down at the top and glued his eyes on the wall so he
couldn't see anything but the wall. The dirt was still there, calling to
him, the good earth, down just five tiny steps.. . .
Fortunately he didn't grieve much. Three days later (I think
maybe he'd been playing with the kids across the way) he came in
coughing. The cough got worse, and Paulino finally had to listen to
the old woman, mad as a hornet, say that it was whooping cough.
Rather than take the child to the doctor, they said let's give him the
cough syrup that Dona Emilia showed us. Neither Dona Emilia's
cough syrup nor the five bucks that they spent in the cheapest
neighborhood drugstore could cure the poor little thing. He coughed
so hard that he could hardly make a sound after a while. The affliction had to cure itself in its own good time.
The poor little thing couldn't even feel his lacerated throat. He
nervously clutched at his head with his hands and quickly swallowed
to see whether the pain had passed. When a fit of coughing seized
him, he ran to any wall in sight to lean his head against it. Slobbering, his eyes watering, his nose running, his mouth open as though
he would never close it again, he drooled a thread of saliva onto the
ground. The little fellow would sit down wherever he was, because
if he didn't, he would run the risk of falling down. The chairs
whirled, the table whirled, the odors from the kitchen whirled. And
Paulino was nauseated, stunned, broken in body.
"Baby. Look heah, go outside to cough. You're messin' up the
flo', jes' look."
He succeeded in gathering strength from his fear and went outside. Another seizure would come, and Paulino sprawled out, kissing
the earth, but feeling no desire to eat. For a while he lay like that,
still in the same position. His body no longer ached from fatigue;
his head no longer entertained any thoughts, so great a shock had
he undergone. He lay there, and the moist earth merely aggravated
his cough which would surely kill him. Finally he found enough
strength to get up. He rises, feels like going inside. But if he dirtied
the house, he would get a pinch on his little chest. Anyway, it really
wasn't worth the effort; they would only send him outside again.
It was late afternoon, and the factory workers were going home
in the customary parade of streetcars. At least that was some small
39 diversion for his grit-rimmed eyes. Paulino went to sit on the front
doorstoop. Night was falling in a flurry of life. A gentle and dusty
April breeze made you hold your hand over your face. As the sun
clawed the distant crest of the plain, it blotched the exhausted sky
with red and green. The groups of workmen streaming past looked
almost black against the light. Everything was incomprehensibly
very fight and very dark. Horrendous monsters darted darkly past,
with little boys hanging from their stirrups, beating up a cloud of red
dust on the sidewalk. People, more monsters, and huge horses pulling
pretty carriages.
It was then that Teresinha appeared. She was all dolled up, you
should have seen her. Yellow slippers, hose pinkening her lovely
legs showing as far up as her knees. Above that an azure dress
prettier than the April sky. And above that his mama's face, lovely,
with her hair coiled into two shimmering knots, the blue-black hue
of Naples dissolving into her dark tresses fired by all the colors of
Without realizing, Paulino stood up, as the whole inexplicable
garble of joyous instinct shook his body. "Mama," he called. At the
sound of that name, Teresinha turned. It was her "figliuolo." I don't
know what thoughts crashed through her brain. Heedless of her silk
stockings, she ran to him and knelt on the sidewalk and crushed him
joyfully against her full breast. Teresinha cried because, after all, she
was indeed very unhappy. Fernandez had given her the gate, and
the poor distraught wretch had taken to the streets once and for all.
Seeing Paulino so dirty and thin made her feel the weight of her own
wretchedness. A sudden stranger to the fancy fife she had been
leading, she cried.
Only later did she grieve for her son, so frightfully wasted, more
delicate than her own lost virtue. He was surely suffering in his black
grandmother's house. For a second she considered taking Paulino
with her, but she hid the thought from herself. Beyond a doubt
Paulino would only be a millstone around her neck. Then she looked
at his pitiful clothes. Not good cloth, but after all it served the
purpose. She clutched at any pretense to soothe her conscience:
"They take good care of him." That way she would never have to
worry about him again. Still she kissed him on his little mouth which
was moist with drool. She tried to swallow her tears, "figliuolo," but
she could not. She hugged him hard and kissed him again and again.
Then she walked away smoothing out the wrinkles in her dress.
Paulino, standing there so small and still, making no move, finally
saw the blue dress disappear in the distance. He turned his little
40 head. A piece of greasy wrapping paper skittered crazily along the
ground. He took three steps to pick it up. It wasn't worth the effort.
He sat down on the steps again. The afternoon colors were gently
turning gray. Paulino rested his cheek in the palm of his hand, and
half observing, half listening, he held that attitude with exhausted
indifference. The drool slid from his open mouth onto his palm.
Then it dripped onto his jumper. Dark in color, so it wouldn't show
the dirt.
41 Three Poems by Gunter Eich
Translated from the German by Michael Bullock
Stand up, stand up!
We shall not be accepted,
the message came with the shadow of the stars.
It is time to go like the others.
They placed their streets and empty houses
under the protection of the moon. It has little power.
Our words will be jotted down by the silence.
The manhole-covers rise by a crack.
The signposts have turned round.
If only we remembered the signs that mark the path of love,
that can be read on the surface of water and in the drifting
of the snow!
Come, before we are blind!
When the window is opened
transience drifts in with the wind,
with the last petals of the red chestnut
and the Fascination waltz
of nineteen hundred and four,
when the window is opened,
giving a view of the raft harbour and the piles of timber,
the ever-moving leaves of the acacia —
the thought of you is like a death sentence.
Who will kiss your breast
and know your whispered words?
When the window is opened
and the horror of the earth drifts in —
42 The child with two heads —
while one sleeps, the other screams —
it screams out over the world
and fills my love's ears with dread.
(They say more freaks have been born since Hiroshima.)
When the window is opened I think of those
who loved each other in nineteen hundred and four
and of the people of the year three thousand,
toothless, hairless.
To whom are you giving the dissolving glance that once was mine?
Our life speeds swiftly to a close as though we were flying away,
and happiness dwells hidden in the abysses.
Minor repair: a jet of carbide flame.
One man is enough.
A crack, he says, in the parapet of the bridge.
A sticking-plaster wound.
So he says, in order to deceive us,
for sicknesses are circulating in the earth's wiring system.
Telephone wires and underground cables spread them further,
syphilis, tuberculosis, cancer, leukaemia,
illnesses to which metal isn't subject.
They have been recognized too late.
But what could have been halted?
Perhaps there is a purpose behind it:
maybe a change of status is in progress.
The first things man has to give up
are his illnesses.
Later the rest.
Gunter Eich is the outstanding German lyric poet and author of radio plays,
some of which have been translated into English and produced by the BBC.
Among the literary awards he has won is the Georg Buchner Prize. He now
lives in Austria.
Michael Bullock's original work and translations have appeared frequently
in Prism international and other journals, and in book form. He is on the
Creative Writing staff at the University of British Columbia.
43 Three Poems by John Ferns
Tall, grey, gaunt
as a cancered man
the elm stands still
in its own corpse
until the lightning
or a heavy wind.
Behind green bushes
at its base
a saw grinds teeth
slow as a trapped beast.
Ropes are tightened
from the top to a truck.
Tennis has stopped.
We stand here waiting
for a crash of dust:
the great, dead tree
arriving out of the sky.
Images of rainbows in a crest of sun
were scratched to poems
with a rusty key
around the wainscot
of a madhouse room.
He wrote them praying.
On the surface of the sun
they could see him playing,
writing with his key,
alive as the leaping fish
44 that joined impossible hands to his
in rising hallelujahs
from the unfolding sea:
bright shells of London rain
break open to show their pearls.
"But it is said, that, after a year of total silence, when his housekeeper,
on the 30th of November, told him that the usual bonfires and illuminations were preparing to celebrate his birthday, he answered, 'It is all
folly; they had better let it alone.' "
 SAMUEL johnson, Life of Swift.
The rats devouring his mind had stopped.
He felt the language
breaking in his throat.
He staring at her
like an angry bear,
she staring frightened
at his swollen eye.
They saw each other
with a strange surprise.
Later, the rockets
bursting in the sky,
he thought, "It never stops."
And then he laughed
and then he kicked the wall
and then he cried
before the rats
renewed their silent work.
John Ferns teaches English at the University of Western Ontario. These are
his first poetry publications.
45 Three Poems by Yvan Goll
Translated from the German by A. P. Schroeder
If only the salt would release itself
in my eye,
Who will conceal the iron
from the mine in my heart?
All my metals
disintegrate in the memory
The pure phosphorus rages
in my soul
From the rippling agate on my finger
I await the help of the stars.
Bloodhound before my heart
watching over my fire
you who feed on bitter kidneys
in the suburbs of my misery
with the wet flames of your tongue, lick
the salt of my sweat,
the sugar of my death
bloodhound in my flesh
catch the dreams that fly from me,
bay at the white ghosts,
bring back to their fold
all my gazelles
and crunch the ankles of my fleeing angel.
In the plaster gardens
in bogs of bromine
the dying stray about on miserable stilts
and swaying limbs
Fire still waggles in a south-eastern head
an aristocratic flower shivers
in a bursting chest
Who hears the birds in the temples?
the lizard in the tired feet?
The hurriedly living and the slowly dying,
how they still scramble
up the rope of unreal sleep.
Now comes the winter of this high night,
the white ether twists the crown
about her trembling hair.
Yvan Goll (1891-1950) was born in Saint-Die (Vosges) and studied at the
University of Strasbourg. He published 50 books of poetry, fiction, plays and
essays. Along with Apollinaire he was a leading figure in the development of
A. P. Schroeder's poems also appear in this issue.
47 to Nancy on what concerns us
I have a thought to share with you.
never have I lived so relaxed
since I wanted you broken of me
that afternoon when nothing seemed
as right as setting things in motion.
must we clench and spoil one place
now that we have learned
in the rituals of body and spirit
the always curving back of every tendency?
long ago when a man first saw himself
in the glass of a pool
he must have known
his god was not that pale animal,
but looking at the thing was good
and he fancied it,
imagined a small god,
though he knew a better magic.
for to summon the great one
he became a mere tool
in the mirrorless darkness of a cave,
to trace the endless rituals
of bulls and stick-people
and not himself, chimerical self.
you and I are two supple sticks
joined at the tip and bent on the turned earth,
surging and ground on the course
like the yoke of mated oxen.
I need not have loved myself
to love a lodestar in you,
or mistake your reflection for mine.
we bulge together at the world.
Steven Foster teaches English at San Francisco State College. Poems of his
have appeared variously in the United States.
48 Picture Poem by Robert Chute
a revolution
new conservatives
**«<: *
Robert Chute, who contributed this photo-poem, edits The Small Pond in
Maine. He has been in Prism international and many others.
49 Two Poems by Robert C. Brown
The scholar's function is fact;
the poet's function . . . truth;
man's function . .. perhaps . . . improvement.
My function is survival.
Lies, dogma, cant,
madmen in stone castles
I support gladly
to survive.
I would screw my mother
to stay alive.
ping • #
•     •        *
pong    pong . t
. * Ping
• * •   *
. • pong*   pong
ping .
. ' .
pong    pong • t
. ping
• pong    pong
Robert C. Brown is a student at Mount Allison University. His poetry has
been accepted by Fiddlehead.
51 Three Illustrated Poems by Jane Shen
in this auspicious year
of the rooster,
struts like a fat pigeon
a straddling bird
doing a hoola-hoop
of feathers like a veteran
paratrooper down the valley
of the enemy's land.
High looms the peak
of his comb, ruby fringe
in the green shade
of trees
flickering the checkered
grains to unruffled eyes.
lets his hair down after
the meal is secure within the smoldering
fire of his hide and his tail,
sable in the sun, is long and hanging
in a sheath before this truce with the fleas
ends.        Up fast,
is no
the air.
holds a character of a hidden
poem    within a drop
of sun dissolving
in dew lines of a mirrored
face framed by a window
under the sorrows of a thatched
roof that leaks after rainfall of vast constellations.
Jane Shen has had poems in several Canadian and American journals and on
the CBC radio programme, Anthology. She is studying for her Ph.D. in English
at the University of Toronto.
Translated from the French by Carolyn Wolfe
It is a long time since I looked for life here
in this room that I pretended to love,
the table, carefree objects, the window
opened to the tips of each of the other green nights,
and the heart of the blackbird built into the dark vines;
everywhere the new lights complete the old shadows.
I accept for myself the belief that I can begin again,
that I am home, that the day's journey will be good.
And it is right that, at the foot of the bed, this spider,
(because of the garden), I haven't stomped it enough;
one could say that it works and shapes still in the
web which waits for my fragile ghost.
Philippe Jaccottet was born in 1925 at Moudon, Switzerland, and presently
resides in France. Several volumes of his poetry and translations have appeared
in French.
Carolyn Wolfe won the 1968 Macmillan Prize awarded for the best poem by
a student at the University of British Columbia.
Translated from the French by Carolyn Wolfe
I walk, met in the flame, in the vacant paper mingled
with the air, the uncapped earth. I offer my arm to the wind.
I am not going further than my paper. Further, in
front of me, it fills a ravine. Further still, in
the field, we are almost equaled. Halfway to my knees
in the stones.
Beside me, they speak of sickness, talk of a tree. I
remember. So as not to be mad. And that my eyes
won't become as weak as the earth.
I pause midway and stop to watch the blank field, the sky on top
of the wall. Between the air and the stone, I enter into a field
without a wall. I feel the skin of the air, and yet we still remain
Except for us, there is no flame.
Andre du Bouchet, who is a contemporary French poet, lived in the United
States for a number of years and graduated from Harvard in 1943. Many
volumes of his poetry have been published in French. Translations of his work
appear in many journals and magazines.
56 Sreten Asanovic, born in 1931, belongs to the generation of young Yugoslav
writers who have refused to follow the dogmas of socialist realism and who have
joined the so-called "modern wave." He is a critic, chief editor of the literary
weekly Odjek (Echoes), a movie scenario writer and author of several books
which have been translated into many East European languages. This is his
first appearance in English. Blazo Sredanovic is an American engineer,
originally from Montenegro. His wife, Gail, has an m.a. in Comparative Literature from Stanford.
Bitter Fragrance
Translated from the Yugoslavian by Blazo and Gail Sredanovic
In the memory of every prison camp inmate there remains something which you, who did not share it with us, cannot understand
so deeply, nor can you imagine the importance that such things had
for us. That doesn't surprise me, for even to us, who lived together
in the same barrack, things did not always have the same meaning.
Some of us were worried by the presence of crematoriums in some
distant camp; others couldn't have cared less, so long as there was
none in our camp. I think you understand what I mean — the
atmosphere in such camps is well-known. People get on one
another's nerves more than they do in normal circumstances; they
quarrel about trifles. Yet in some ways they are closer than usual
(perhaps because they share the same hardships), they sympathize
with one another, and they are sometimes able to resist the strongest
temptations in order to help their friends. I won't bore you with the
details: our getting up at dawn every day, the roll call in the freezing
morning air, the forest we cleared under the endless rain, the road
we slowly dragged behind us, my friend who lost his leg when a tree
trunk fell on him, my countryman who used to cry whenever he
would smell the fragrance of the oaks, the exhausted column returning at dusk, bearing the heavy burden of its comrades who had been
disabled during the day. I won't even speak of the gay reception
that awaited us on returning to camp. I'm sure you know about that
already. But I want you to understand that all those things didn't
57 concern me very much. I was sure from the beginning that I could
endure a long time under such conditions; I firmly believed I would
get out someday. I had hope! I even managed, although I am not
exactly talented for humor, to keep the entire group laughing with
my jokes.
The hardest thing for me to bear was the evening in the barrack
where, after our day's work, plastered with mud and clay, full of
decaying leaves and sticky sweat, I would dream of clean water, of
which we never had enough, of a piece of soap, and of clean sheets.
Once every three months they gave us some soap, which would
clean the dirt from our bodies for some days, but when it was used
up, the water alone wasn't able to wash the dirt from our bodies,
some of which looked like living skeletons, while others resembled
kangaroos with their sagging stomachs in whose wrinkles there
remained the salt of dried sweat and the heavy odor of humus. The
suffocating air in the barracks, where so many sour odors mingled,
made us dream, nearly every night, about the same thing — the
small piece of soap on which there were imprinted three letters,
whose meaning no one knew. That soap had a special fragrance, it
was lovely, intoxicating, although it was obvious it wasn't any luxury
product of any famous company. Just the same, that fragrance had
the power to change the unbearable atmosphere in the barrack,
where often we couldn't sleep from the heaviness of the air, from the
heavy greasy odor.
Our return to camp was almost cheerful on the days when we
were to get our new bars of soap. We hardly talked of anything else.
The soap would be in boxes in the storehouse, and we could smell
its fragrance long before entering the camp. We would begin to
wash in earnest. We would repeat the process after every day's work
until the last particle of soap had been turned into suds.
Finally the end of the war came and we returned to our families
and our many everyday cares. We would talk about the concentration camp; we would even lie a bit; sometimes we had to make the
camp life seem much harder and blacker than it really had been.
Otherwise, how could those who had endured worse at home ever
understand us. They could have said "yes, you worked, you worked
hard, you were hungry and dirty, but you didn't die, you were
ordinary war-prisoners." But we didn't let them say that about us.
Of course, we didn't dare tell them about the soap. It would have
seemed ridiculous to them, and they never could have understood
how something so ordinary could have assumed such importance.
With time we began to forget it ourselves. I would have completely
58 forgotten it, too, if last year one of my friends from the camp hadn't
come to see me. Naturally, we renewed memories.
"Do you remember the soap?" he asked me. "Did you ever find
out what the three letters on it meant?"
"No, I never did. I suppose it was the trademark of the manufacturer. To tell the truth, I've never thought anymore about it."
"Well I have thought about it. And I found out. That wasn't any
trademark, and it wasn't any decoration, either. The letters R.J.F.
stand for REINE JUDISCHE FETT — that is, 'pure Jewish fat'."
You can imagine what effect that had on me. That fragrance
which I once dreamed of for days came back to me again, but it no
longer was a pleasant odor (how could it ever have been); rather it
was the stench of burnt human skin, of the soot of their nails, of the
ashes of their bones.
It came back to me in a variety of nuances, but every one of them
was foul, stinging my nostrils, burning my flesh. In a frenzy I began
to scrub myself with ashes. Then with sand. I was terrified by the
very thought of soap; my skin broke out in sores from the useless
washings, from the nettles, the ashes and the sand, but none of them
could make the smell disappear; it became even stronger, and
harsher, as if it were coming out from under the layer of abraded
skin, from beneath that layer which had accumulated during the
past two years of comfortable living, as if it were seeping out of my
pores, out of my conscience, from my hands, which were shriveled
from the constant washing until they themselves looked like disintegrating soap. I would run to the river, wade into the cold water, roll
on the pebbles, I scrubbed myself with moss and with leaves . ..
nothing did any good. I was horrified at the thought that that foul-
smelling soap had been made from human flesh, from innocent
people who had dreamed, just as I had, of the war's end, of their
families, of their gardens, of flowers, of a million things, but not that
they would be mangled and thrown into cauldrons of caustic soda.
No, I couldn't imagine that for years I had washed myself with that
soap, that I had, even more often, dreamed of its fragrance as something beneficial, its unusual fragrance which, when I discovered its
origin, began to dissolve me, to turn me into soap-suds, without the
help of caustic soda.
I began to avoid people, for it seemed to me that they gave off
that odor, too. I stopped washing myself, it no longer made any
sense. I isolated myself completely. But what could I do when at last
the walls, the windows and the floors began to smell, to burn and to
smoke. I couldn't bear it any longer. I came to this concentration
59 camp, probably the worst of the concentration camps — much worse
than the one where I was, to this camp which was already famous
as a museum of death, and here I found work as a guide. I learned
all the facts by heart and I began to guide the groups of strangers
who came to visit the camp. And so, by looking at the heaps of bones
which the crematorium had not been able to consume, at the mountain of false teeth and broken eye-glasses (they sent only naked
people there), I gradually freed myself from my nightmare, from
the smell of soap.
I still have the same job; the people come and go. Often they put
on sad faces while I am giving my talk, for it seems they must have
forgotten the war and don't believe very much in documents. In
these moments I smell again the foul odor which they give off, as
they force themselves to be sad, and in my mind I see again the huge
kettles of caustic soda. My voice trails off, the words stick in my
throat, they cluster together, choking me. And that is where each of
my explanation ends.
They flail their filthy abuse
and make you mad to kick them
over the rim of the world's asshole,
and yet I doubt my right —■
star drippings are droppings today,
as lazy-dogged flesh clinks in the till,
nor do pants too tight at the crotch
ensure the young salvation,
but where circles the Dante I teach,
or Mr. S. who's half my check this month?
I've suffered dandelions on fire,
my lawn is choked;
let others tell these kids
nix on their acid fertilizer:
it may be better than my rusty hands.
R. D. Lakin has published in Nation, Antioch Review, The Minority of One
and many others. He lives in Fort Collins, Colorado.
61 From "Marimarusa," a polar sonnet
The landscape changes.
The rivulets, the fish, the birds wheeling south
sail to seek another city.
The moving deserts of the sea are still.
We are thrown back upon the springs behind the seasons.
There is no escape from the dream under the ice.
Temperature hardens underground with snow.
Landmarks drain and disappear.
Memory shrivels like a scarecrow
emptying out identity.
We are caught within this constriction of life.
Sacred only is the breathing-hole of the seal.
The landscape changes.
Mountains arise where there were none before.
A tree becomes a great harpoon in earth.
Its roots are drowned, its boughs plucked clean as caribou.
We are thrown back upon the springs behind the seasons.
There is no escape from the dream under the ice.
The polar hare freezes inside his fur.
Flesh feeding on flesh takes refuge
in a white night of terror
from the brutal ambush of frost and teeth.
We are caught within this constriction of fife,
Sacred only is the breathing-hole of the seal.
62 The landscape changes.
Fountains of deception drench the senses.
Sightless blizzards stumble through the dark.
The unwary fall on knives at invisible doors.
We are thrown back upon the springs behind the seasons.
There is no escape from the dream under the ice.
We have tried to arrange the patterns of time
into a snare to capture the timeless
till we ourselves are trapped
in our own snare.
We are caught within this constriction of fife.
Sacred only is the breathing-hole of the seal.
Sintered spells are laid like nets in the night
for furry animals stalked by their own fear.
The polar bear nuzzles the blackness of his snout.
Our eyes close — on the dark night and the soul.
Nothing lives but the dream under the ice
in the nakedness of being, encountered at The Pole.
J. F. Hendry's poems have been in Poetry, Atlantic and other magazines. He is
Head of the Modern Languages Department at Laurentian University, Sudbury,
63 Two Poems by Avron Hoffman
is a woman
with her legs together
The beginning
and ending of day
is no more
than the turning of her toes
Always on her feet
she shuffles with closed steps
to the beginning of spring
her lover
who melts her frozen thighs
with his long green tongue
I yelled rape
in a world filled with celibates
and they locked me up
in a whorehouse
I became a statue
covered by my human skin
cement poured down my mouth
by the presiding judge at the time
I yelled rape
and no one panicked
like it was an order
people shielding their bodies
as they marched past
carrying me in a sultan's chair
I yelled rape
and a thousand truths exploded
multiplied and then disappeared
behind my dark heads
Avron Hoffman is a graduate student in creative writing at the University of
British Columbia.
65 Three Poems by Paul Lavigueur
I know your room,
A place in which,
Alone, you take your shape.
I know this mask, your face,
Yet see the black behind the mask
That shapes the face.
Shadows, I know, can break
This mask, these walls,
And when they go
What new mask will you take,
What walls will take their place?
When dark stands back to back
The walls themselves are shadows
That the shadows cast:
The black behind the mask
Holds up the walls.
When silence woke
It yawned around the world.
Without a voice
It spoke unwritten oracles
No one had ever heard.
We were miles away
From anywhere and out of touch
When silence leaked into our lives,
Mowed down our roof-wrapped walls.
66 Wall-levelling silence that survives
Our plaster permanence,
Cracked the mirrors,
Stopped the laughter on the stairs,
Cleared the lovers from the halls.
Till we could see
The peaks of distant mountains
Washed in silence, glaciers in that sea.
White were the buildings in the capitals
Lapped by its waves, numbed by its snow.
Such deep and quiet rage
Spoke all our rage to sleep
And grammar unravelled on our tongues.
The poem grew in blankness on the page
As every lapsing letter disappeared
And signs subtracted meaning
Word by word.
It is no beret,
No cloaked romance.
Make no mistake:
This portrait of a man
In which no man stands
Is a landscape
Of No Man's Land.
But rather take
For his tormented hours
Sunflowers that blaze
Out of the very paint
Toward the furious face
Of the sun
Wild like some madman's mad gaze.
Paul Lavigueur is a Canadian poet, often-published in Prism international
and elsewhere. He is now at the University of Leeds and is submitting his first
book of poems for publication in England.
67 Robert Fox has published stories and poems in magazines for five years; recently his work appeared in December and West Coast Review. He is now an
M.A. candidate at Ohio University in Athens.
We tend to forget or repress those who were important to us in
our childhoods. I had already forgotten Joey who had been my best
friend, my only friend, who loomed like a colossus over my youth.
When I got in to work today, Dolores, and the two college girls who
help her out, were hanging up their coats. They stiffened and said
good morning and I said, "At ease, girls," and laughed, and was
about to enter my roofless play-house when I saw an open Daily
News on Dolores's desk, and caught Joey's name in an article. Suddenly I was tasting the dust of sandlots, and hearing the clatter of
construction of look-alike brick homes that forfeited our World
Series's before we were ready to quit. "I'll give it right back," I said,
and closed my door behind me.
I hadn't been back to the neighborhood for a long time. I went
once, after my folks moved out, to say good-bye to the el, and to the
boys who hung around under the trains at the candy store; we used
to play poker on school nights and summer vacations. I met Joey's
mother who called me Butch because she could never remember my
real name. She said, "Hey Butch, you'll never believe it, but he's all
different now. He's got himself a nice little girl and he's settling
down." The article didn't mention a wife.
He was two years older and grew rapidly. He was different, even
after the mystique created by his size and strength. No pictures of
Hollywood cowboys, of the sort I collected with ice-cream wrappers,
fined his room; his walls were covered with actual photos of Sitting
Bull, Geronimo, Tecumseh, and various other chiefs and braves who
managed to have their pictures taken. Joey had a whalebone bow
68 that only he could draw. He compared himself to Odysseus. The
Odyssey was the only book he read in high school, which I thought
strange, since I had difficulty with the style. Joey said that if the
teachers would have been smart enough to realize how important the
book was, he would have done them the favor of staying on to
graduate. He loved his bow, and when he wasn't target shooting, he
would aim over his back fence and shoot blindly into the parking lot.
He occasionally flattened some tires, and when people complained,
he lifted his bow and aimed casually at their heads. When he became an excellent marksman, he would get a kid from another block
into his yard and make him stand with an apple on his head. If the
kid refused, Joey would threaten to shoot him in the leg. Joey made
one kid strip naked and climb a tree, while he stood below cracking
a bullwhip.
Joey was my best friend, and every day after school I went to his
house. He never came to mine because of my mother. In effect, I
lived alone with her while my father was out earning enough money
to buy them a house when I grew up. One day she said, "Don't you
think it's strange that he should still play with you? What's the
matter with him? What kind of freak is he that he can't have friends
his own age?" I can still see her saying that, standing over me in her
blue meter-maid suit and high black boots, her face red from the
cold. It didn't take me long to understand what she meant and I
hated her for it, because there wasn't anything like that between
Joey and me at all.
I overheard people say that Joey was crazy. I knew that he wasn't,
that he was expressing some vague, undefined, but consistent
longing. Once, on the Fourth of July, Joey felt absolutely terrible
that he had no way of celebrating. He went up to one boy who had
been setting firecrackers off up and down the street and said, "Hey
kid, I see you got some firecrackers there."
"Yeah," the boy said, and started to pull strings of them out of his
pockets. In a minute they were in Joey's pocket and he was walking
away. The boy stood for a minute and then flew after him, winding
his arms around Joey's leg, his teeth gnawing through the pants, and
Joey walking on, looking ahead, dragging his leg as if a newspaper
had blown against it.
Joey remained a freshman throughout high school. When he was
old enough to be released, he joined the paratroopers. On one practice jump his chute didn't open and has back was badly injured.
When he came back, he hung around the public library a lot and
discovered a set of animal encyclopedias that he had to own. He
69 stole the entire set by coming each day and taking one volume. It
was at this time that he began carrying a .38 pistol in his armpit.
He said that it was to use on himself should he get caught. He said
he could not have been able to stand being humiliated.
Joey began to work for his father, painting houses. With some of
the money he made, he bought skin diving equipment. He owned
the best speargun he could get, and wouldn't let anybody touch it.
One day we went diving, using Joey's equipment. We went and got
lunch, and were about to go back into the water when we realized
that one of Joey's masks was missing. There was another group of
boys diving further down the beach. They were just coming out of
the water. Joey, with the speargun in his hand, started towards
them. I followed along. The other boys had just come out of the
water and were horsing around. Joey walked up to them with the
speargun that could shoot through four inches of wood. All of their
equipment was in a pile next to their clothes. Joey pulled the trigger
and the spear went through undershirts and flippers into the ground.
When the spear stopped quivering, he said, "I'm going to turn
around and count to three. When I turn back, I want to see my
mask hanging on the end of the spear." I turned with him, and
when we turned back, the mask was dangling on the end of the
spear. He said thank you, tossed the mask to me, and with one foot
planted on their equipment, pulled the spear out of the ground.
Yes. And the time I saw his mother she asked what I was doing
and I told her I got a job with an employment agency. I had a lot
of jobs while I was going to college, and thought that when I got
out, I wouldn't have any trouble at all getting a job with promise.
That was not true. After a while it got so that I would take the
elevator up to a suite, but not go in. That's how often I was turned
down. But when I got the job with the employment agency I was
satisfied. I love to look over people who think that someone would
want to hire them: punks fresh out of school who come on all
enthusiasm, messengers in their thirties with families, and middle-
aged men and women with tired eyes who make a point of how they
need money, and how much energy they have. And Joey's mother
said that he had gone into business for himself. With a little sense,
and money in the right places, it was possible to make a payoff, she
said. She told me how earnest he was, dressing in a suit everyday,
and studying arithmetic out of books from the library.
As I can piece the story together, the two men he shot were loan
sharks. The police came on the scene so quickly, they must have
been taking protection. I can visualize Joey's confusion when the
70 police came, him trying to face them, explain to them in all his
innocent grandeur how he had been cheated. Somehow he managed
to get into his car, and it took a five mile running gun battle to get
him. In the picture I never would have recognized, he is stretched
out on his back, wearing a suit, his white shirt soaked with blood.
It is grade B melodrama, I know, yet at the same time, I envy
the simple, clear-cut way he died.
What's that in the corner?
The thermometer is a fetus
wrapped in alcohol.
Lean closer, lean closer
move your ear
to my lips
if you can't hear my roaring.
My mind reels words
which my tongue,
a sodden rubber ball,
cannot follow.
I am out of tune.
You say they are moving
my bed
but tell the thick eared one
with pencils upright in his pocket
that I am moving
to earlier waters.
0 tell him also
that if he bends to me
with his marble hand
he shall perforate
his throat
with those pencils.
1 won't hear
of leaves casting shadows
in the corner.
That is clearly an unblinking
see his fine flat head
the snakeskin of his feathers
his eyes of sun.
Besides, I can smell him.
If he is not an owl
then he is Ronald Snider.
72 Take the water away
the nurse has left
a thumbprint.
Tell her I will tell her
This is a different room
all blue
0 let me up
and I could dance
for you
and smile
like what's her name
the Last Duchess.
Such blues invite the dance.
Blue gives:
all things that reflect
are blue.
1 am listing.
I do not intend
to slip quietly beneath
the surface.
I will go down
like the Titanic
with a terrible roar
and a lonely silence after.
If you'll take off the blankets
I will float easier.
That tree outside
is like my tree
where I had a branch
as a child.
You must look up
and into such blossoming trees
then you can see
how tight the blossoms
73 locked like grapes
furious with living
like the sudden
glance of an owl.
Even from here
I can smell that blossom
and its bitter branch.
This morning it is raining
and I am so light
I could float on that puddle.
I no longer desire to.
Lois Lindblad, a student of literature at the University of Washington where
she edits Assay, won the national short story award from Story magazine in
1964. The poem here is her first in print.
Translated from the French by Daniel Bryant
I have skin the colour of red tobacco or mules,
I have an elder-pith helmet covered with white linen.
My pride is that my daughter be most beautiful, giving orders to
the black women,
My joy, that she show a pure white arm among her black hens,
and that she be not ashamed of my stubbled cheek, when muddy I
return to the house.
And first I give to her my whip, my flask, and my hat;
Smiling, she forgives me my dripping face and brings to her face
my hands, oily from
testing the kernels of the cacao, the beans of the coffee.
And then she brings me a whispering kerchief; and my woolen robe;
clear water to rinse my teeth of silence:
and there is water to wash with, and I hear in the cistern the
moving water.
A man is hard, his daughter, soft. Let her keep herself always
for his return, on the highest steps of the white house,
and as she spares his horse the embrace of his knees,
so he will forget the fever that pulls inward all the skin of his face.
I love my dogs too, the neigh of my finest horse,
and seeing at the end of the straight way my cat going out in the
company of the monkey . . .
all things enough not to envy the sailor his sails
that I see at the height of my metal roof on the sea as upon the sky.
St.-John Perse, the leading French poet and diplomat, is a master of the long
poem, the most famous of which are "Anabasis" and "Exile." Daniel Bryant
teaches mathematics at a Montreal high school.
The hacking cough of winter infects the landscape
With a bare massing of branches,
The air an epidemic of leaves,
Continual cadavers
Blackened by rain.
Twilight goes violet;
And the mountains, in their crisp uniforms of snow,
Stand off like nurses.
There, with my face drawn up and laced tight
as an old shoe,
I live a life of dark wings,
Fingerling trout, and yellow dogs.
I pick my way among the rat-grey stones,
The ritual beds of the salmon —
Where they deposit their roe,
And are belched up by the river,
Tagged with a band and a number.
Night laps the edge of the ridge.
Within its watery presence
The mountain lion paces,
A pursuing shadow,
Raging with a hunger the color of charcoal;
The woods carry the pungent smell of rutting elk
And the heavy flutter of bats;
Stones cling together in an embrace of dark mud;
The moon settles into the wet nest of the eagle;
And my soul is bare in the flash of the instant.
Where does sadness go?
I don't know,
But it moves slow.
76 Dawn and the land is drowned in a gush of rain.
Water-courses fall away from the summit,
Tumble toward their sea exit,
And all
Comes down
With a splash.
Waves form.
A heavy plank, soaked with creosote and manned by a crew
of barnacles,
Thrust up by the sea like a grim bone,
Points its stump toward the white underbelly
Of a trawler;
Black waters curl, I lose myself in the breaking,
And on its face
The scudding foam holds out terrible secrets.
In all of this,
This melting away of the world,
Amid the odors of moss and Doug Fir,
The fish and wet mornings,
With a certain fatigue,
Like the earth in this long winter,
My heart, too, descends
A drop at a time.
Ronald Moore is a graduate in creative writing at San Francisco State College.
This poem is his first in print.
77 Two Poems by E. Curmie Price
You start with lost animals
I start with grass growing
Circling the back of your eyes
Spider years
Winter comes on like that
I tell you
So you'll remember
How autumn dazed us
Across Bellingham Bay
Asia raises its head
for Francis
The saxophone spreads its gold
Frame turning its case to violet
My tongue fumbles
I cannot play this piece
Yet notes keep building into new harmonics
I dream I'm waking
Through mid-night observations
Out of sleep she says
Your right hand reached
Where I knew you were
That we might be mad but decent
We need historians
I hardly think at all now
Being lost in a vacant blue
This morning out of breath
I must entice the sun
To rise above Coranza Street
E.  Curmie Price is presently at Western Washington State, Bellingham.  In
September he will teach in the Black Studies program at Indiana University.
79 fVe Three, You and I
A short play by
The audience is seated. The curtain is closed. House lights are on
full. As the audience entered the theatre they were given programmes that named the play and its cast, director, stage crew, etc.
The programme also stated that just prior to "WE THREE, YOU
AND I", a brief appeal would be made by "CHILDREN INTERNATIONAL". The play was to have started at half-past. It is now
25 minutes to.
A side door swings open. A heavy-set, well-dressed young man
enters and carries down to the stage a slide projector and large tape
recorder. As he is placing this equipment on the stage, a young girl
of 10 or 12, seated in a wheel-chair, is jockeyed through the doorway.
She is hidden from the waist down by a thick, dark grey blanket. The
HOUSE MANAGER, holding the chair, and the MATRON stand
behind her. The MATRON has a not unfriendly but reserved air.
She is well though sombrely dressed. She quietly talks to and comforts the girl as the equipment is being set up. The girl does not
visibly respond. When the young man, or AIDE returns, he declines
the HOUSE MANAGER'S assistance and step by step backs the
wheel-chair and its occupant down the aisle. Once in front of the
stage the AIDE motions for help. He and the HOUSE MANAGER
then lift the girl, CATHY, onto the forestage.
The AIDE takes his position upstage right. The MATRON slowly
pushes the wheelchair upstage just to the curtain. Stops. Stoops to
comfort CATHY, then turns her to face the audience. The
MATRON smiles. She walks downstage, waits for a moment for
time and effect, then . ..
matron : (warm cultured voice) Thank you ladies and gentlemen.
We appreciate your kindness. (Pause, looks down, puts one hand on
80 girl's shoulder, with other strokes girl's hair, looks up) Mr. Linton,
the director of this play that you are about to see, kindly granted us
a few moments before "WE THREE, YOU AND I" begins. With
your approval we would like to avail ourselves of them. (Slight
pause, looks about) Thank you.
Often ... I wonder if we realize how fortunate we are. Do we
really appreciate all the advantages and blessings that are bestowed
upon us? Do we recognize them? Are we aware of them? Or do we
just.. . accept them? Do we just. .. take them for granted? (Pause,
smile) I wonder (slight pause) —I wonder if we've not only lost
consciousness of our blessings (looks at girl, slight pause, lower
voice) — but the obligations that our having them discharges upon
(To audience) Our organization is a non-profit one. We have no
affiliation with the United Appeal, we rely on individual generosity.
We are, moreover, world-wide. We try to do what little we can
wherever we can, without prejudice, without favouritism. A child is
a child to us; blackness, browness, yellowness does not influence us
one way or the other. We are all God's children, be it from dark-
skinned Ham or his fairer-skinned brothers.
We operate a small library for children in Nigeria. We dispense
powdered milk in Cairo. Bedraggled children in Calcutta have been
given decent clothes. (Lower voice) We have given medical aid to
children like Cathy. (Slight pause)
Cathy is only one of the many Cathys. (Cathy pulls blanket
higher.) Our case folders number in the thousands, each one
needing, and deserving, what little comfort we can give. And we can
give very little compared to what is needed. Cases stay on our
waiting list for years. Every penny, every centime, every pfennig that
we raise is channelled into our work. (Slight pause, sadly) But no
matter how much is collected, it always falls far short of what is
needed. (Pause)
(Discursive manner) Work like mine is rewarding. Each subscription gained gives one a sense of accomplishment, of purpose.
(Slight laugh) It also changes one's outlook on life. (A little
embarrassed) When I first solicited donations, I looked upon it as a
task. In fact, (slight laugh) if it hadn't been for a friend to whom I
was indebted, I would never have thought of doing such work.
Imagine! Asking people for money! Just the thought of it was so
(Looks out into audience, almost jutting out her chin, emphati-
81 cally) That was three years ago. In that time I have seen cripples
resign themselves to never being able to live a normal life. Girls
unable to name their child's father. (Getting carried away) Babies
graced with congenital venereal disease. Liberian mothers giving
what little they have, blood, not milk to this year's crop of children!
(Pause while she quiets down but not completely) I have asked for
charitable donations from different cities' and towns' substantial
citizens. (Slight pause) I received one and two dollar donations
from them. I have attended $50 a plate dinners organized for
charity. After caterers' fees, the cost of the entertainment, the
nominal fees of the organizers, $4 a plate was raised. I have stood on
a street corner to abide indifference, suffer insults, turn down propositions, and collect nickels. (Pause) People change.
(Pause. Throughout this Cathy has not moved except to nervously
knead her fingers a little. The MATRON gains control of herself,
smiles, becomes friendly again, almost obsequious.)
I know I shall not have these problems here. (Friendly, talkative)
In the past I have found that theater audiences are usually the most
generous in contributing to charity. Oh, I don't know why this is,
perhaps, (smiles to audience) those people who appreciate the Arts
have a better character. (Quickly) Perhaps their appreciation of the
finer things in life is coupled with compassion for those less fortunate.
They say that the artist is everyone's brother. (Little laugh) Perhaps
too if they can afford such a luxury, be it ever so rewarding, as
seeing a play, they are more capable of giving donations. (Small
half laugh) Certainly this audience.
I must confess though, that I have a special reason to say this.
(Holds out her hand to the fellow in the corner as he walks over
. . .) This morning when I learned that Mr. Linton graciously consented to my appearing before you, I personally contacted the complete cast (receives a list from her friend who then resumes his place
in the corner. She looks at list, adjusts glasses, then a little triumphantly) : Jane Ferguson $5, Iola Shelley $10, David Findlay $10.
(Looks up at audience)
Mr. Linton himself donated $10. The stage crew collectively
raised $35.50.
Seventy dollars and fifty cents! When these people learned of the
cause of my visit and realized that to a very great extent the success
of this campaign rested upon their leadership and generosity, they
gave wonderful donations. When I told them that I would let the
audience know of their generosity, I knew, I felt, that they would
not disappoint all those thousands that rely on kindness. (Slowly) I
82 know, too, that you will be as gracious and as generous in your contributions. (Slight pause) There will be a collection box in the lobby
after the play. (Pause)
Now— (looks about) —■ I see that our time (looks at watch) is
gone, (looks up) but I would like to say a few more words, or rather,
Cathy and some of her friends would. (Looks down, smooths Cathy's
hair; in a lower voice but one still audible throughout the theater,
friendly) Wouldn't you, Cathy? (No response, then almost a little
stern, menacing) Cathy, wouldn't you? (No response for a long
time, then Cathy barely nods her head)
matron: (Warmly, quietly) Good girl. (Stoops to kiss her head,
then normal voice) Good girl. (Straightens up, to the audience sup-
plicatingly) Would you spare Cathy a few moments to speak to you?
(Pause. At this juncture, and at others throughout the play,
audience members might say or do something. People have made
snide comments, asked questions, and walked onto the stage. In any
event, the cast must handle these disturbances. Embarrassed quietness, the AIDE asking for silence, the MATRON referring a question to CATHY might all be used.)
matron: (Quietly, warmly) Thank you. (Pause, to CATHY
quietly) Cathy? .. . Cathy, would you like to speak to your friends?
(Slight pause and CATHY nods her head. MATRON slightly nods
to the AIDE) Good girl. Good girl.
aide:   (Moves to his right, in a voice meant just for someone offstage)  Could I have the mike now? (Disappears, then re-emerges
with a live hand mike, loops the cord on the stage. He offers the
mike to CATHY; with lowered head she does not move.)
matron:   (The MATRON takes the mike and places CATHY's
hands around it.) Here Cathy . . . take the mike. (MATRON then
steps away. Pause.) Well, Cathy?
cathy: (Pause, then almost inaudibly) I am one of
matron: Louder Cathy.
cathy: (Audible though barely, slowly, almost jerky but accented
as if memorized) I am one of those people that you read about. The
newspapers classify me as one of society's underprivileged. I am one
of society's unfortunates . .. My mother (long pause) My father was
killed in an industrial accident, leaving my mother to care for me
and four older brothers and sisters. I was two-years-old. I greeted my
third birthday with multiple sclerosis. I couldn't... I couldn't. . .
(Dies off)
matron: Come, Cathy, look at the audience so your friends can
hear you.
83 cathy: (Slowly raises her head, her face looks pale, drawn and
tense, continues) I couldn't walk by the time I was four. My mother
had to work. We were without relatives who could help or friends
who would want to help. The only occupation that she was suited
for was the occupation that is the butt of the more well-to-do's jokes.
An agency hired her as a cleaning woman. When she ... when she
came home she would come and sit beside me. I remember her
swollen hands were rough. But they were gentle to me. "Your
father," she used to say, "never saved much money and he had his
wild times, but he gave me (her face starts to work) five of the finest
children that a woman could hope for." And she would hold (suddenly breaks off, lowers her head, pulls the mike to her chest, and
collapses inward; a weak thin cry is heard for 5 or 6 seconds)
matron: (Sadly) This is not easy for Cathy. (A little louder) God
knows I wish she didn't have to do this. (Walks to CATHY, puts
her hand on her shoulder, softly) Cathy, did your mother come to
our office for help? (CATHY nods.) Did she, after explaining her
problems and her circumstances, secure our aid? (CATHY nods.)
Did you see a specialist about your legs? (CATHY nods.) Did he
say that only long and lengthy treatment would help you? (CATHY
nods; pause) Tell us what happened Cathy? (No response) We sent
you to a big hospital where many doctors tried to help you walk.
They made many operations, gave you this pretty wheelchair and
those shiny braces on your legs so that you could walk? (CATHY
matron : Cathy, do you appreciate all those fine people that made
this miracle possible for you? Do you want to thank them? Cathy?
(CATHY nods.) Thank them, Cathy.
cathy: (After a short pause, without moving, in a strangled voice)
Thank you.
matron: (To audience, emotional) This girl, this poor, frightened
girl, pins whatever hopes she has for a normal, useful life, on charity.
So that she won't live and die in a wheelchair, people have to feel a
little compassion. They have to remember that not everyone can
walk. (Almost a little bitter) Not everyone is lucky. They have to
forego a new dress, a dinner and show, an extra Christmas present,
so that someone can hope to live. (Long pause, she stares out at
audience, then gathers herself, and softly) CATHY? (No response)
CATHY, would you like some of your other friends to speak to these
friends in the audience? (No response. The MATRON comes to the
front of the wheelchair, kneels down and puts one hand under
84 CATHY's chin, raises her head a little; very softly) Honey, would
cathy: (Also softly, in a weak voice) Yes. (On this word the AIDE
leaves the stage with the slide projector which he then sets up in the
audience. This may involve additional business with an extension.
As he exits the curtains partially open to show a screen, descending
if possible. The MATRON, oblivious to this, gently caresses
CATHY's cheek as she, the MATRON, stands up and moves behind the wheelchair.)
matron:  (To CATHY.) Now, Cathy, while your friends are getting ready, is there anything that you would like to say?
cathy:   (Weakly and falteringly)  I... I would like ... to show
them ... my . .. braces.
matron: (To audience.) Yes, Cathy, I would think that you could.
That would be nice. (CATHY slowly, slowly raises the blanket up
into her lap, exposing a large and shiny brace on each leg; pause)
matron: (Almost whispering, though audible to all) Is there anything else you would like to say or do, Cathy? (Short pause)
cathy: (As before) Yes. I would like to show them . .. that their
kindness has helped me to begin to learn how to walk.
matron: (A little relieved yet sad, in a more normal voice) Yes.
That would be nice. (A hushed expectancy, a long pause and then
long silence while CATHY ever so slowly and with difficulty locks
her braces into position. She then struggles to stand. This entails
raising herself up by pushing on the arm rests)
matron : (While CATHY is straining to get up) Cathy, would you
like me to help you?
cathy: (Inaudible to the back sixth of the audience because the
mike isn't at her mouth; panting) No, I have to, and I want to,
learn how to do things my . .. self. Thank . .. you. (She succeeds in
raising herself, the blanket slips to the floor. She stands there slightly
splay-legged for balance.) I want to show my friends that I haven't
wasted their money. (Slowly turns to her left and with great difficulty, as if she were on stilts, slowly begins to walk. Her arms flail
about her, partially for balance and partially for momentum. In this
fashion the mike sometimes comes near her mouth, and is sometimes
jerked away. MATRON moves alongside CATHY.) I want to show
them that I will fight to have a normal life. That all I need is their
help. I want. ..
matron : Yes Cathy.
cathy: I want.. . (continues her flailing way) I want
85 matron: (more excited) Yes CATHY!
cathy: (Gradually starts speaking faster as she becomes more
frantic) I want to have a normal life to meet the man that God
(every now and then choking) made just for me to love and marry.
matron: (Interrupting, also more excited, moves along with
cathy: (Stops splay-legged, breathing heavy, looking frantic) I.. .
I want want to dance with my husband (starts a grotesque little
dance) to dance with my husband on our wedding night to be in his
(MATRON rushes two  or three yards in front of CATHY,
kneels, holds out her arms.)
matron: Yes!
cathy: (Stops dancing, heads as fast as possible for the MATRON,
her words a mad jumble) And have his children . .. his children!
(collapses in the MATRON'S arms and sobs quietly except for the
odd muffled cry that escapes. The MATRON speaks quietly to
CATHY who has now subsided. Just the odd word is vaguely heard.
She then straightens up, leaving CATHY again splay-legged for
balance. The MATRON walks over to the wheelchair and blanket,
brings them both back to CATHY and steps aside as CATHY slowly
seats and settles herself.)
matron: Would you dim the lights please? (All the lights dim to
darkness, a beam of light projects on the screen.)
matron: (While CATHY is seating herself, normal voice) Is there
anything more that you would like to say to your friends Cathy?
(MATRON starts the tape recorder as the first slide is projected
onto the screen. It is a head and shoulder picture of an emaciated
young Indian or Pakistani boy.)
cathy : This . ..
ist taped voice: (Interrupting, thin reedy voice with authentic
foreign accent) My family is in a small village not too far from
Hyberdad relies on your good hearts to keep us fed and clothed.
(Switches to next slide; a three-year-old Brazilian girl, very thin
and filthy, dressed in boy's short pants and short-sleeved shirt. Her
long hair is matted.)
2nd taped voice: (Plaintive) For three years we have gratefully
received your beautiful gifts of food. My brother Jesus died last
month, so now there will be more food for us.
(Switches to next slide. A small African girl, two-years-old, is
standing naked in a huge expanse of dried red clay, almost a
86 3RD taped voice: (Musical, slightly sing-song) When it becomes
very hot here in my country my father
matron: (MATRON stops tape recorder, crosses to CATHY and
takes the mike) Her father died last month. Before we found out
and could send more help, this girl also died. (Short pause. Crosses
back to and starts the tape recorder)
3rd taped voice : goes to the village to bring the food that you send
to us. Thank you. (Next slide comes on, a close-up of a five-year-old
Egyptian boy shown; eyes, nose and mouth are covered with flies.)
matron: (Moving into the light projecting the slides, her hair disarranged, neck tendons jutting out, demonic appearance, bitter)
With your help we send him and his brothers one pint of milk,
powdered milk, each, daily.
4th taped voice: (Non-committaly) Thank you. I have never
seen you but I drink your milk every day. (Next slide, a picture of
a young boy or girl with warped legs, sitting in a dry gutter and
holding an alms bowl)
5TH taped voice: (Husky, as if diseased) Pennies, pennies, please
just pennies. Pennies.
(Next slide, a boy dressed in oversized clothes, leaning against a
6th taped voice: (Defiant) What dad, mister? I don't want your
crummy handouts.
matron: (From this point onward, speaking under the taped voices
and filling gaps, punctuates the following with such comments as)
Give, please give. These children need your help, your charity. Just
a few pennies. A few pennies from you. Help these children. You,
help these poor children. (Next slide, a row of dead children, naked,
obviously dead of starvation)
7th taped voice: (Thin high voices in wavering near-litany) We
are dead now, we are no longer hungry, we no longer care, but if we
had only yesterday, just a little. Just a little.
(Switch to next slide. Whereas before the slide changes were
relatively sedate, they now become more rapid. The voices grow
correspondingly louder. As do the voices so does the MATRON.)
2nd taped voice: My brother Jesus and I, were given your beautiful gifts of food that were very good. Thank you. (Switch to next
4th taped voice : We have never met, you five far away, and yet
you send me milk every day. (Switch to next slide)
3RD taped voice: When it is hot here in my country we are very
87 hungry so my father goes to the village for the help you might send
us. (Switch to next slide)
5th taped voice : Just pennies. Pennies, pennies, please just pennies,
just pennies and I bless you. (Switch to next slide)
2ND taped voice : When Jesus died last month you forgot to send
us his food too so there would be more for us. (Switch to next slide)
6th taped voice: Mister, I don't want your crummy handouts.
(Switch to next slide)
i st taped voice : In my village we always wear the clothes you send
us. Thank you. (Switch to next slide. Changes now quite rapid,
volume and MATRON quite loud.)
7th taped voice: If only yesterday we had just (Switch to next
5TH taped voice: Pennies, pennies please, just (Switch to next
4TH taped voice: I drink your milk that (Switch to next slide)
6th taped voice: What Dad, I don't (Switch to next slide)
3RD taped voice: We do not have (Switch to next slide)
ist taped voice: Very good to send the (Switch to next slide)
2nd taped voice: Jesus died because (Switch to next slide)
7th taped voice : We are dead now (Switch to next slide)
ist taped voice : Thank you (Switch to next slide)
2ND taped voice: Thank you (Switch to next slide. Voices are now
so loud that they are not distinguishable. The MATRON is almost
yelling. The slides become more rapid and the voices louder until
the sound system quickly jams. This jam warbles in intensity and
continues thus for several seconds. Then there is abrupt silence and
darkness except for the last word from the MATRON.)
matron: (Screaming) Give! (Complete darkness. Curtains rapidly
close. Complete silence. Five seconds pass, full house lights come on.
CATHY, the MATRON, wheelchair and tape recorder have disappeared. Curtains open sedately. A bright bare stage containing
perhaps a minimal fake set. Nothing happens. This is the end. It
seems as if everything has been a dream, a nightmare. It seems as
if it were all imagined.
As the audience leaves the theatre they will notice in the foyer a
large collection box. On it are blown-up photos of the seven slides.
On top of it is a large red "THANK YO U."
88 Production Notes on "WE THREE, YOU AND I"
It seems that "We Three, You and I" is a play that not many
people like. Ah, but can one say that these same people appreciate
the play? Perhaps. But it seems evident that people would much
rather like than appreciate. In fact, the play almost never came to
be. John Linton, one of the few people who immediately both liked
and appreciated the play, couldn't find a cast. There were the usual
casting problems. We couldn't find a gaunt 12-year-old crippled
actress. For a long time we couldn't find an actress. A typical situation would be arriving at a house, supposedly the home of a gifted
13-year-old actress and discovering no small part of her talent lay
bulging under a 38 bra. Nice for her but not for the part.
If the "Girl's role" was giving us problems, so too was the "Matron's". Here was the main trouble. No one liked the play. A normal
for-instance would be, "Well, I'm just wondering why you want to
do it. I mean, you both go to University and are studying theatre, so
why don't you do a play ... ? This isn't really a play, is it? ... It's
more like a reading. Not really a play ... (a long, calculated silence
on our part, finally) I don't really like it." In short, three weeks
before the first performance we did not have a cast. When we did
have a tentative one, they quit.
Luckily we did come up with two actresses in time. Though she
did not like the play, Mrs. Keller made the attempt to work at it.
Janie Cassie became intimate with her role. And Charles Bump was
the name of the man who played the "Aide".
If the cast or would-be casts had troubles with the play the audiences didn't. They hated it. Displeasure varied from people squirming in their seats to standing up and leaving. Many averted their
eyes from the stage. Some murmured in undertones. Pennies were
thrown on the stage. The Matron's dialogue was interrupted by
shouted questions, "Why aren't you affiliated with the United Good
Neighbour Fund?" "I would like to know if the girl with the pretty
hair is doing this of her own free will?" During one performance an
audience member stood to shout, "For God's sake, don't make her
do this." To a chorus of approval he gained the stage, crossed to the
girl Cathy, and told her that she didn't have to do this if she didn't
want to. "We all love you, Cathy."
If the majority of the audience felt this antipathy to the play, it is
nonetheless interesting to note some typical reactions. On the evenings that a collection box was placed in the foyer, money was always
collected. One middle-aged couple, the woman, crying, donated five
89 dollars. An East Indian student, poorly dressed, lowered a dollar
through the red "Thank You". It's an interesting thing to think
How did the cast come through the interruptions? Like veterans
they utilized anything the audience verbalized, either by obviously
ignoring the comment, or neatly turning it. The two actresses cried
for twenty minutes after the first performance. "Charles Bump"
was trying to explain to his friends, who wanted to know how he
could do that to a little crippled girl, that it was all a play.
Bill Greenland is a Creative Writing student at U.B.C. His play "We Three,
You and I" won the U.B.C. Alumni Playwriting contest and C.B.C. prize. The
play was first presented in 1968 at U.B.C.'s Frederick Wood Theatre and then
at  the University of Victoria's  Phoenix Theatre.
90 Four Poems by Hagiwara Sakutaro
Translated from the Japanese by Graeme Wilson
The swimmer's skin diagonals the water,
His hands stretch out together as in prayer;
His heart, as any jellyfish translucent,
Shines in the water, and is water there.
The swimmer's eyes are listening through water
To the drowned promise of a hanging bell;
His soul observes the white moon on the water.
There is but water in a wishing well.
Hang portraits of a hand,
Hang them on all four walls:
Tepid blood continuously
From each black window wells.
This road, just newly opened, goes
Straight to the city, I suppose.
Dark melancholy day.
I stand at a new crossing where
A new horizon like a tear
Runs lonelily away.
The sun above a straggling row
Of huddled rooftops huddles low.
How thin, how shorn of shade
Stand the few trees in the sparse wood
That once so greenly sturdy stood
Before the road was made.
Such bleakness feeds my blemished mood
Of anger and incertitude
As black sorts well with black.
How, how can I re-fangle me,
How be what once I used to be,
Where does the road run back?
O where's that leafy road I seek
That runs to boyhood from the bleak
Horizons of the town?
For this new road, which I reject
And will not travel, more was wrecked
Than all those trees cut down.
With an utterly honest mind
I'd like now to declare
Certainties; things signed
With the undodgeable
Thereness of things there.
What once I saw, the shined
Gel of the atmosphere,
I'd like to tell so clearly
You can but share the sight.
Things of this kind
Assume all kinds of elaborate
Clothes; and emit, like waves
Of wind on barley, light.
God-stuff they are; gods nearly;
Things from enormous caves.
Hagiwara Sakutaro, who died in 1942, is one of Japan's great modern poets,
whose work is becoming better-known in the West through such fine translators
as Graeme Wilson. Recently, Mr. Wilson, who is now in the Far East as a Civil
Air Attache, had a selection of his translations published by Tuttle's, completed
a script on Hagiwara for the BBC, had printed more than one hundred translations in Japan, the Phillipines, Australia, India, Britain and the States. Two of
his Hagiwara translations were in our 8:1.
Translated from the Hungarian by Mario Fenyo, R. A. Davies
In a New York hotel
T, no longer a wanderer,
hanged himself:
Does he wander still?
In Prague M.J. took strychnine,
stayed countryless in his country,
and R.P. hasn't written a year at least,
may be dead, a dead root at peace.
A poet who went to Spain,
his eyes became gelatine:
How can a poet of the divine human
shout before a soldier's bayonet?
How can he shout against night
and when he comes to the end
the wanderer, unfree,
how can he shout for fife?
When the lamb begins to bite
and the dove becomes a crow
when the hoop-snake rolls
and the wind begins to blow.
Translated from the Hungarian by Mario Fenyo, R. A. Davies
Our half-kissed kiss's fire
The night is cold. Sometimes we run,
Crying run
only not to get there.
How often we slacken our pace. We embrace:
We shudder and we flush.
You push me back: my lips are blood.
Your lips are blood.
Nor will we have our marriage.
Willingly we would be, a kiss accomplished,
calm dead,
but we lack that kiss, are called by that fire
and we say
Tomorrow. Some tomorrow.
Miklos Radnoti was a leading Hungarian poet and translator. Several volumes
of his poetry appeared during his lifetime, and two posthumously. He was shot
on a death march from a concentration camp in Yugoslavia; three years later
his body was discovered in a mass grave.
Endre Ady, who died in 1919, was an outstanding Hungarian poet of his
Mario Fenyo is a historian at Portland State College, Oregon. R. A. Davies
teaches at Pacific University.
When the young poet had pushed back his hair
For the last time and had folded his book,
The chairman of the department stood up,
Cleared his throat, and looked out expectantly,
"Are there any questions anyone would like to ask?
About the poems, I mean. Our poet is at your service."
"Well, yes; is there a central meaning or theme
That you would say dominates your poetry?"
When I was really young, the hot blood
Sloughed off the skin. I ran with the pack
All night; we beat a stop-sign to death
Before I dropped back to the soft, warm room.
"Why do you always seem to put women down
In your poems? Is it because you can't make out
With them, or is it because you make out
Too well? Why do all male poets seem to do this?"
A woman is the place where the line of time
And the curve of life converse. If the word
Is "Now!" then convex and concave become one;
Flesh and mind caper together in the high air.
96 "Would you tell us how much conscious attention
You give to form? I mean do you write out the content
First and then add the meter, rhyme, and so forth,
Or does everything just come to you all at once?"
When the wind blows, the reed bends
When two cars crash headon, the passengers
Pay no mind to the windshield's energy of inertia
When the bullet has your number, it's no use ducking.
"Would you call yourself a pessimist or optimist?
How much of his work should the poet devote
To the social issues of the day? Why does so much
Of your poetry seem gloomy and funny at the same time?"
On a clear day, when the fog is out, a man
Can see his own navel. When the mirror speaks,
I listen. The oldest proverb is a girl's laugh,
And the latest science is the spade in the earth.
"Thank you. Most illuminating. Thank you very much."
John Randolph is chairman of the Fine Arts Division at Westminster College,
Fulton, Missouri.
97 Two Poems by Frederick Ryan
round stones
round stones of
rest on the table.
some totter
being unstable
on a wood table
stones are completely
from each other
and the wood table
the round stones
independent as sand
on a steel floor.
outside the window
a bay horse is
moving slowly
a small field.
his rump and tail
show from behind a tree
in the room
my wife washes the
refrigerator door
with a dry cloth.
98 she picked the stones,
the bay horse is gone,
unstable stones totter
and rock
on the wood table.
male and female parts
the male and the female parts of man stream on
with the fire and the creamy grab in the mind's groin
(all while the world pumps on outside)
as we, amphitheatred by fingers
cruise the universe of the ear
and legs,
celebrating the tongue's thunder
through bloodveins
celebrating the grasp of giants
closing like caves over each leaf
of our skin
celebrating the nerves electric
and the fuming surge
of blood
the male and the female stream on
billowing the green rolling sins and the always un
of the creamy grab in the earthen mind.
Frederick Ryan drives cab in Toronto. Two of his novels are with publishers.
99 Two Poems by A. P. Schroeder
They phone and say
you've been exposed
and then no sound.    I tighten things . . .
The silver in your nails begins to drift
through rusting wood . .. and then
No sound.
Uncovered voices, that have dried.
I nail the night against the roof,
You rustle, overgrown with wind,
The trees lie down and cover themselves
with leaves,
and then ... no sound.
You suddenly grow voices,
You talk of greased trees,
We are grinding up the sun
you say.
I see the colors that have died,
The rustling links that disappear
into the back of night,
and I outside; my arms around
the roof that guards me from the wind ..
And you leave, like a man
in the skin of a bear
that is not yet killed.
ioo the years
Everything moved; and when she made her
remark about the water, a log
broke from the pier.
Her tall parents, cold against midnight,
died with frozen eyes and buried themselves.
I watched her, hidden among barnacles in the fog,
And we washed the same waves until
she said "rain" into the sky and
followed fog horns into the ships.
I stayed among the clams
about the logs.
And every night I watch the pier
walking across the bay toward a
storm on the wrong horizon.
A. P. Schroeder co-edits Contemporary Literature in Translation. His translation of a Christoph Meckel story was in our 8: a, and he has translated three
poems by Yvan Goll for the current issue.
Lean Evelyn Morrison sought Stoical calm;
At twenty-three, Evelyn sealed up her will —
Two blobs of red wax, a ribbon of silk,
One modicum of passion, of energy two.
Still, in the hintermost region of her heart,
Snare on his paw, hanging from a tree,
Lion roared out spittle froth of his agony.
Evelyn Morrison at thirty-four
Banged the "Quiet" sign on her front door,
Calmly pronounced her thin commands,
Her "Please don't play here's," her "Please go home's'1
Two daisies wilted were her eyes,
A ribbon of silk curled in her hair;
And, from the bottom of her heart
To the apex of her belly
Lion roared out (thorax rumbled)
Spittle and froth of his agony.
In her fortieth year, lean Evelyn Morrison,
Sought a climate clearly of contemplation.
For the Stoics taught (and Cicero after agreed)
The Life of Thought is best for Tranquility.
Behind her lay the gray stone stoop, ahead:
Lavender lilies of the Golden West.
She found totem-pole palms of a worshipful height;
And winter-time and summer, of heart-red hue,
On skeletal stems, like skeleton fingers,
Nostalgic poinsetta, the Christmas kind.
102 So many poles of plus,
Abundance of minus,
Lean Evelyn Morrison feared electric thunder!
And therefore went back where the soot deep-dyed
The daisies of her eyes
And the ribbon of silk in her hair.
And Lion roared out, as he hung from his tree,
And his lean body spun in the spittle and froth of its agony.
At fifty-three, Evelyn Morrison thought,
How nobly Brutus eased his noble end:
She turned on gas, she turned it off;
She took two sleeping pills, then three,
But only dreamt of falling under trains.
So she puffed white powder on her brown-petaled daisies,
And bought a silver ribbon for her hair;
Still, Lion roared out from his crucifying tree —■
So she rouged red rings — one high, one low — in the
region of her cheeks,
Bought a purple feather in a heart-red hat,
Closed herself in a solitary climate,
And thought the Life of Tranquility.
Until Lion broke free from that hintermost tree
And tore through the apex of her belly,
Of this lean lady that I loved.
Myron Turner's poems have been in Prism international and many more. He
is in the English Department, University of Manitoba, where he and George
Amabile co-edit The Far Point.
103 Books and Periodicals Received
Black Moss, ed. C. H. Gervais, 2450 Byng Road, Windsor, Ontario. Poetry,
twice a year.
either/or, ed. Liz Kerwin, Dave Dewsnap, Acadia University Students' Union.
Freelance, ed. Charles Elliott Mathes, Box 1068, Washington University, St.
Louis, Missouri. $1.00, Sub. $4.00. Poetry, articles, photography, graphics.
Inner Space, ed. Fraser Sutherland. Poetry, 75^.
in store, Creative Writing Section of the Communications Design Division,
Conestoga College of Applied Arts and Technology, Kitchener, Ontario.
Poetry, Prose. 30 pp.
jack Anderson, The Hurricane Lamp, New/Books, R.D. 3, Trumansburg, N.Y.
$1.50 paper cover. Poetry.
Nicholas catonoy, Hie et Nunc, exposition press, New York, $3.00, Poetry,
henri demay, Les Borgeons du Futur, editions Saint Germain des Pres, 184
Blvd. St. Germaine, Paris 6ieme. Collection of poetry. 1968, 42 pps.
henri mMAY,Outre-Soleils, Les presses de la Salamandre, 1966. Poetry collection, 37 pps.
james de mille, A Strange Manuscript found in a Copper Cylinder, paperback
novel, McClelland and Stewart, 1969, $2.75.
william kirby, The Golden Dog, Paperback novel, McClelland & Stewart,
1969, $2.95.
Margaret Laurence, The Fire-Dwellers, McClelland & Stewart, 1969, novel,
$5-95- 3°8 PPS-
Irving layton, The Whole Bloody Bird, McClelland & Stewart, $5.95, 1969.
Poetry, 155 pps.
Stephen leacock, Behind the Beyond, collection of prose, McClelland &
Stewart, paperback, 1969. $1.50.
Catherine parr traill, The Canadian Settler's Guide, Paperback, McClelland
& Stewart, $2.95.
mordecai richler, The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz, paperback novel,
McClelland & Stewart, 1959, $2.35.
harvey tucker, The Dwarf's Hump, Black Sun Press, 70 Pierrepont St.,
Brooklyn, N.Y., Poetry, 1969, $1.00.
4 books in the Canadian Writers Series, New Canadian Library, McClelland &
Stewart, each 95fJ, 1969, paper cover, about 64 pages each:
E. J. Pratt, by milton wilson.
Margaret Laurence, by clara thomas.
Marshall McLuhan, by dennis duffy.
Frederick Philip Grove, by ronald Sutherland.
104 '
for almost every taste
and purpose can be found,
easily, at
919 Robson                                              684-4496
670 Seymour                                               684-3627
4560 W. 10th Avenue                           CA 4-7012
1032 W. Hastings                                     688-7434
University of British Columbia
Hours: Weekdays 8:45 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The Price of Morning
Selected Poems by Walter Bauer
A bi-lingual edition, in German, with facing English translations
"... Fine poems, finely translated .. . vivid, often searing pictures of
the human condition of our time." michael bullock
"... His poems in the German language present a cosmopolitanism
which balances our continentalism, and are an important focus for our
literature. The Price of Morning, in the original German and in Henry
Beissel's fluent English translations, is a wise book, too."
"... The appearance of The Price of Morning, selected poems by
Walter Bauer, is an event of first importance.... Here is a poet who
has paid the price of his morning, achieving poems that spring with
compassion and anger straight out of life." ralph gustafson
"... The book The Price of Morning is beautifully set out, and printed
with amazing care. The translation by Henry Beissel is not only philo-
logically exact, showing a genuine grasp of even the subtlest nuances
of the use of the German language, but is also an achievement in its
own right as language of poetic quality." hans egon holthusen
"... In this newest book we find the expression of the purest essence
of Walter Bauer's nature. . . . This translation will be of benefit to the
whole of the English-speaking literary public of North America."
"Walter Bauer's poetry reflects a consciousness which feels deep concern for the desperate struggle of modern man, thrown into a world
quite often beyond his control.... Henry Beissel succeeds in transposing Bauer's most personal poetic voice into beautiful English."
rainer schulte
"It is a remarkable translation of a rare and genuine libertarian poetry.
... I admire his achievement in its own right as a superb poetry of
suffering and triumph, and I applaud Prism's choice of The Price of
Morning as the first of its publications." george woodcock
For a copy of The Price of Morning, send $4.75 to
Prism international press,
Department of Creative Writing,
University of British Columbia,
Vancouver 8, B.C., Canada.


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