The Cheek


Here’s a new Genesis; the year is One;
This bed and we a world, our lamp its sun.
Love to its single dark dimension bound
Rules its volcano kingdom underground:
The feet at their remote antipodes
Twine their smooth roots; at Capricorn the knees
Nuzzle together; intershafted lies
The amplitude of firm and polished thighs;

And, pulsing in the liquid centre’s heat
The angry sledges of the future beat
Hard on the groaning anvil of our joy.
These labouring ministers to one end employ
Our acts, the loins’ harsh mat, the straining hips,
The moonbeam belly quaking in eclipse;
The sunbeam belly on her tropic rests;
In their north hemisphere the dreaming breasts,
Masking the baffled thunder of the heart,
Flower with promise; over every part
In the grave beauty of their ritual dance
The delicate erotic hands advance.

Out of this tunnel of touch homunculus
Broods in his cave-brow unaware of us.
So stands the lost explorer unaware
Upon the crust of earthquake; stands to stare,
The chart’s false witness idle in his hand,
At the long fallow curve of newfound land.
Close to your cheek this manikin the eye,
Ruminates in a giant revery,
Evokes from its pure amplitude profound
Illusions of interminable ground,
And in his tiny world creates again
The noble movement of the lonely plain.

Vast as the Pampas or the empty sweep
Of virgin earth in its millennial sleep,
Out to the melancholy bounds of sight
The golden downlands ripen to the light;
The delicate groundswell of its contours swerve
In one voluptuous, enchanted curve
To break at last in this still atmosphere
Against the fabulous mountain of the ear.
There in those hills, folded against the skies
The metaphysical cavern overlies
Your world of yesterday, and down its groove
The pulses of our dying music move;
Our laughter and the words we speak as breath
Drum with their atoms on the vault beneath
And wake the dream, and, by the dream unbound
Pass from the body into the soul of sound.

But the cave’s watcher does not see them go,
Those trembling syllables with their golden bough;
For him the hills at the horizon wear
The illimitable and lucid trance of air,
The upland slopes are bland, the golden rain
Drenches the vast envergure of the plain;
And, lost in contemplation, he surveys
Mountains of new imagination raise
Their heads of storm. Cradled in space it looms
Cloud upon cloud in rising whorls and coombs,
A heavenly whirlwind, huge with darkness curled
And gulfs of thunder over all his world,
Where, ruling our last element of air,
There broods the terrible passion of your hair.

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