Thursday, June 04, 2009


(a response to "Surprise" by Billy Collins)

I am told by the announcer
of some public broadcasting show--
is the birthday of William Wordsworth.

He would be 238 years old today,
quite bent over, I would imagine,
weighed down by age and dust, and dreaming
of an abbey wreathed in fog.

Surely he would admonish our propensity
for billboards and high-rises,
shaking his bald head, his bony finger,
the world being "too much with us"
and all that.

But he would soon overlook his misgivings,
tottering up the steps toward the London Eye,
mouth slightly open, arms spread,

as if to express some wordless feeling
caught in the walls of his throat.

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