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Two Poems Melville in the City After a hard day’s work, Tied to a counter, Checking lading lists, Ships’cargo manifests, Keeping customs straight, He allowed himself To water-gaze, indulging In mild ocean reveries: Milky-ways of coral isles, Low-lying, endless, Unknown archipelagos, And impenetrable Japans. He went home the long way, Going by the Battery Where sea breeze brought Smells of breadfruit And paulownia and sounds Of words almost forgotten -Elizabeth Schultz L E V I A T H A N A J O U R N A L O F M E L V I L L E S T U D I E S 7 1 The Sea and the Land As I have seen the sun Slant down into ocean depths, So its rays search the forest, Irradiating suspended particles, Transforming them to sequins. Here, too, when the wind dashes, The sea’shollow roar resonates, While above the pines, clouds Spin out like surf over reefs. Consider as well the intricacies Of stump and coral head, Each vibrant with feelers, Sprouting a rhetoric of color. On the calmest days, there is A snapping in the woods, A clicking in the sea, A pulsating of water, A sighing of air As fish and birds Rise and fall. Swimming among poplar, oak, And pine, I feel more seen Than seeing, aware of eyes In every floating mote. My skin and scent disrupting Invisible currents of being, I yearn for natural connections Beyond linked analogies -Elizabeth Schultz ...


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pp. 71-72
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