“He Hesitates at the Gate”

“He Hesitates at the Gate”

He hesitates this side of the gate, the bridge lies minutes before,
A much travelled thread stretched not far but far enough—
a chasm’s hem—the seam of dreams; seems, nor is it steep or rough
Nor ill-conceived: a simpler bridge, a door
To over there is open and something’s overheard,
“Now, then!” …He withdraws from yesterday’s conceptions,
Herds of hidden instincts, arpeggios of rhymed exceptions.
The early flies swarm; they gorge on neglected revelations, the third
And fourth generations of congresses of well-intentioned giants
From the pantheon of legends from his childhood. There is no beanstalk
Here, no yellowed road to emerald heights, no lean talk
Of auld lang syne nor is beauty ever fast asleep while sentient clients
Dance wildly round a crystal casket, no—a plaited sensation, ropes
Of primitive doxologies and fine-stitched patterns of long forgotten hopes.

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