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Rimbaud and His Muse


Black birches full of autumn soundó

like rain their few excited leaves;

what honest passion can be found

where light dissembles, wind deceives?


Between the trees she comes and leaves

Shaken to learn of my seclusionó

I cannot ease the loss she grieves,

my art was built upon illusion.


The calm she looks for in my figure

restraint or death itself conceives;

through my long dream I trusted neither.

Blind will alone confronts the leaves.


My skill was stronger than the leaves

and yet it falls away as fast;

she frowns and waits and disbelieves

that madness found me out at last.


Beside her now my shadow heaves

like meaning seen but never formed,

hugely alert among the leaves

where worse than madness is performed.


Moore Moran



© 1955; originally printed in The Atlantic
.  Reprinted by permission of the

by Grapholina

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