A Robert Duncan Poem I Love

January 24, 2013 § Leave a comment

Evocation
(by Robert Duncan, 1960)

At the dance of the Hallows I will tell my love.
There where the threshers move,
the lewdness of women ripening the wheat,
the men in the outer room joking,
how the Holy Moves over them!

The Earth shakes.    Kore! Kore! (for
I was thinking of her – She
who shakes the stores of ancestral grain)
The Earth does not shake again.  Troubled,
the heart recovers.  But is moved.
At the dance of the Hallows I will tell my love.
It moves to fill with song, with wine,
the trouble, the quiet, the cup, that follows
the divine Threshers.

Kore! O visage as of sun-glare, thunderous
awakener, light treader!
will you not wake us again? shake the earth under us?

At the dance of the Hallows I will tell my love.
It is my song of the whole year I sing
rendering lovely the fall of Her feet
and there where Her feet spring, even
at the dance of the Hallows I will tell my love,
the melody from whose abundance leaps
the slow rounds of winter, pounds summer’s heat.

How the Holy moves over them I will tell my love
that lies a grain among the living grain.
Therefore I join them, dancing, dancing …
a thresher among the Threshers.    Kore! Kore!
(for I was thinking of her when the quake came,
of radiant desire underground)
Thou hast my heart, a grain, the Earth’s store.

At the dance of the Hallows I praise thee therefore,
Earth-mover, tender Thresher,
Queen of our dance-floor!

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