THE LOST CARNATION
in the lapel now had only a stem,
The carnation went to assemblies and slept.
The carnation admired the red fringe
No one ever noticed the white.
The poem germinated from seeing a carnation in a cut-glass vase on the table of an imitation Italian ristorante. I don't like to think my poems have ideas, but my poems always do. What I really mean is that I do not like to have ideas substituted for my poem, or my poem reduced to an idea. I want my poems read or heard as motions without stopping points and as verbal and auditory textures and with no conclusion.
The underlying view, a view that permeates my poem, is the Jacques Lacan view that people are spoken by others and never speak themselves. What is spoken by others is a language of lies, for people speak a language of lies. I have said the purpose of the poet is to take the language of lies that people speak and live by and turn this language into a language of truth.