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402 Swedish Lars Gustafsson (b. 1936) San Francisco Sailing Further Underground When the light falls over the hills they brighten like fire, for a last moment the whole city drinks the light The first white men who saw Alcatraz found the island swarming with penguins solemn comical birds that died easily. The Chinese were called in by Morgan, ten dollars, not as a wage but once for all and they died like flies in their railworks no Chinese women were allowed but ten or eleven came in any case all Chinatown from eleven Chinese wombs and the sick young girls from Canton were locked in the cellars to die Kaiser Morton, Lord of the USA protector of Mexico, donor of the Xmas tree in Union Square there’s verdigris along his epaulettes he died easily one winter night If you are quiet you can hear the Creoles dance Schooners, galliasses, four-masters, barques entire city quarters consist of sunken ships which were filled with sand and anchored in a sisterly manner close against each other Lars Gustafsson 403  The whole Embarcadero rests on an underground fleet. Pan American Building, Bank of America the skyscrapers are standing on decks deep down and under the earth that fleet is sailing on Free Fall year after year it goes on sometimes it seems to slow up but it never stops here are big friendly trees they’re not waiting for me in the yellowed grass of late summer the flock of crows rises violently, as if they didn’t want to be overheard someone simply strokes my hair and I am perfectly happy for three minutes then I go on falling headlong year after year it goes on there is no hand to catch me and that’s all 404 Swedish Darkness Round my other side my averted side my uninhabited side Darkness in darkness and in the inmost dark something to wrestle with strong enough to whirl me away like a leaf Fragment (A . . . confined, in the command module on the first expedition to Jupiter after thirty four weeks goes into orbit round the biggest, most ancient planet. Then for four seconds he weighs as much as the biggest bronze bell in Kiev and doesn’t know it.) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (A vanishes like a shining point into the terminator’s giant shadow.) A Poem on Revisionism An uncertain fly trapped in a night-express still tries flying and finds it succeeds remarkably Lars Gustafsson 405  Having come from the southern to the northern end of the coach a much wiser fly already the train going faster and faster into the night Robin Fulton, 1974 ...


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