Tuesday Poem: "Suicide of a Moderate Dictator" by Elizabeth Bishop
This is a day when truths will out, perhaps; leak from the dangling telephone earphones sapping the festooned switchboards’ strength; fall from the windows, blow from off the sills, —the vague, slight unremarkable contents of emptying ash-trays; rub off on our fingers like ink from the un-proof-read newspapers, crocking the way the unfocused photographs of crooked faces do that soil our coats, our tropical-weight coats, like slapped-at moths. Today’s a day when those who work are idling. Those who played must work and hurry, too, to get it done, with little dignity or none. The newspapers are sold; the kiosk shutters crash down. But anyway, in the night the headlines wrote themselves, see, on the streets and sidewalks everywhere; a sediment’s splashed even to the first floors of apartment houses. This is a day that’s beautiful as well, and warm and clear. At seven o’clock I saw the dogs being walked along the famous beach as usual, in a shiny gray-green dawn, leaving their paw prints draining in the wet. The line of breakers was steady and the pinkish, segmented rainbow steadily hung above it. At eight two little boys were flying kites.
by Elizabeth Bishop
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