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Tag Archives alchemy

ALCHEMY

The cherry’s leaves are gilded now, arranged
fan-like on the lawn, by that perennial
alchemy – no intellect invented –
that turns skyward green leaves to falling gold.

Before the season was named ‘the Autumn’,
it was ‘the Harvest’ and then ‘the Fall’.
The Pilgrims took the last across the sea –
where, from bosky Maine to tinder-dry
Arizona, its melancholy sounds.

A male blackbird with its bright yellow beak,
foraging, flicks the leaves hither and
thither as if they were fools’ gold – humans
being humans,

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ANTIQUITY

Ancient Greeks preferred it to chronicles

for poetry is the art of maybe,

the alchemy which turns fact into song.

 

‘Antiochus honours the saviours of men,

the immortals, Asclepius of

the gentle hands, Hygeia, Panakeia.’

On the margins of barbarity

and wilderness,  a Greek army doctor

commissioned a recondite altar – found

some seventeen hundred years later

when Chester’s Market Hall, its pediment

topped with cornucopia, was flattened.

 

Centuries before the Twentieth

was stationed here,

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