Thursday, April 23, 2015


The woman I was used to seeing in the poem
Had left, taking only three commas and
A dented apostrophe. Another had moved in
But did not expect to be there long.
Her poem was being redone. The other inhabitants
Tried to pretend nothing had changed.
"It is just as I told you," God told me later
"People never like where you put them.
Keats  -- nice fellow, Keats -- originally hired
A tall, thin, nearsighted girl to appear in
La Belle Dame Sans Merci but Rossetti told her
She was born to be the Blessed Demoiselle
Since then, there have been at least twelve Belle Dames
Two of them, and by no means the worst, male."

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