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In Pylos, old man Nestor grins: too often.
Nine battlefields creak in his kneecaps.
The sea's gaunt tribulations
Shake in his blood.
Outside, the children sing and play.
Their voices have no faces.
Flames have no teeth, wine has no tongue.
His hands are on backwards.
His north is water.
There are sheep within his head.
The years are falling
Discard by discard to the day.
It is all
Quite painless.
One glint of blazing bronze, then dark.
They lay him east of Pylos in a field
Washed by the wind which sweeps and sweeps away.

Copyright © 2000 Hugh Cook

Picture of front cover of ARC OF LIGHT poetry collection by Hugh Cook.

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