The cantos of ezra pound [from The Cantos of Ezra Pound (1972)]

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3804 And the waves like a forest

3805 Where the wind is weightless in the leaves

3806 But moving,

3807 so that the sound runs upon sound.

3808 Xarites, born of Venus and wine.

3809 Carved stone upon stone.

3810 But in sleep, in the waking dream,

3811 Petal'd the air;

3812 twig where but wind-streak had been;

3813 Moving bough without root,

3814 by Helios.

3815 So that the Xarites bent over tovarisch.

3816 And these are the labours of tovarisch,

3817 That tovarisch lay in the earth,

3818 And rose, and wrecked the house of the tyrants,

3819 And that tovarisch then lay in the earth

3820 And the Xarites bent over tovarisch.

3821 These are the labours of tovarisch,

3822 That tovarisch wrecked the house of the tyrants,

3823 And rose, and talked folly on folly,

3824 And walked forth and lay in the earth

3825 And the Xarites bent over tovarisch.

3826 And that tovarisch cursed and blessed without aim,

3827 These are the labours of tovarisch,

[Page 132]
3828 Saying:

3829 "Me Cadmus sowed in the earth

3830 And with the thirtieth autumn

3831 I return to the earth that made me.

3832 Let the five last build the wall;

3833 I neither build nor reap.

3834 That he came with the gold ships, Cadmus,

3835 That he fought with the wisdom,

3836 Cadmus, of the gilded prows. Nothing I build

3837 And I reap

3838 Nothing; with the thirtieth autumn

3839 I sleep, I sleep not, I rot

3840 And I build no wall.

3841 Where was the wall of Eblis

3842 At Ventadour, there now are the bees,

3843 And in that court, wild grass for their pleasure

3844 That they carry back to the crevice

3845 Where loose stone hangs upon stone.

3846 I sailed never with Cadmus,

3847 lifted never stone above stone."

3848 "Baked and eaten tovarisch!

3849 "Baked and eaten, tovarisch, my boy,

3850 "That is your story. And up again,

3851 "Up and at 'em Laid never stone upon stone."

3852 "The air burst into leaf."

3853 "Hung there flowered acanthus,

3854 "Can you tell the down from the up?"
[Page 133]


3855 And God the Father Eternal (Boja d'un Dio!)

3856 Having made all things he cd.

3857 think of, felt yet

3858 That something was lacking, and thought

3859 Still more, and reflected that

3860 The Romagnolo was lacking, and

3861 Stamped with his foot in the mud and

3862 Up comes the Romagnolo:

3863 "Gard, yeh bloudy 'angman! It's me".

3864 Aso iqua me. All Esimo Dottor Aldo Walluschnig

3865 Who with the force of his intellect

3866 With art and assiduous care

3867 Has snatched from death by a most perilous operation

3868 The classical Caesarean cut

3869 Marotti, Virginia, in Senni of San Giorgio

3870 At the same time saving her son.

3871 May there move to his laud the applause of all men

3872 And the gratitude of the family.

3873 S. Giorgio, 23d May. A.D. 1925.

3874 Item: There are people that can swimme in the sea

3875 Havens and rivers naked

3876 Having bowes and shafts,

3877 Coveting to draw nigh yr. shippe which if they find not

3878 Well watched and warded they wil assault

3879 Desirous of the bodies of men which they covet for meate,

3880 If you resist them

3881 They dive and wil flee.

3882 And Mr Lourpee sat on the floor of the pension dining-room

3883 Or perhaps it was in the alcove

3884 And about him lay a great mass of pastells,

3885 That is, stubbs and broken pencils of pastell,
[Page 134]
3886 In pale indeterminate colours.

3887 And he admired the Sage of Concord

3888 "Too broad ever to make up his mind".

3889 And the mind of Lourpee at fifty

3890 Directed him into a room with a certain vagueness

3891 As if he wd.

3892 neither come in nor stay out

3893 As if he wd.

3894 go neither to the left nor the right

3895 And his painting reflected this habit.

3896 And Mrs Kreffle's mind was made up,

3897 Perhaps by the pressure of circumstance,

3898 She described her splendid apartment

3899 In Paris and left without paying her bill

3900 And in fact she wrote later from Sevilla

3901 And requested a shawl, and received it

3902 From the Senora at 300 pesetas cost to the latter

3903 (Also without remitting) which

3904 May have explained the lassitude of her daughter;

3905 And the best paid dramatic critic

3906 Arrived from Manhattan

3907 And was lodged in a bordello (promptly)

3908 Having trusted "his people"

3909 Who trusted a Dutch correspondent,

3910 And when they had been devoured by fleas

3911 (Critic and family)

3912 They endeavoured to break the dutchman's month's contract,

3913 And the ladies from West Virginia

3914 Preserved the natal aroma,

3915 And in the railway feeding-room in Chiasso

3916 She sat as if waiting/or the train for Topeka

3917 ---That was the year of the strikes---

3918 When we came up toward Chiasso

3919 By the last on the narrow-gauge,

3920 Then by tramway from Como
[Page 135]
3921 Leaving the lady who loved bullfights

3922 With her eight trunks and her captured hidalgo,

3923 And a dutchman was there who was going

3924 To take the boat at Trieste,

3925 Sure, he was going to take it;

3926 Would he go round by Vienna? He would not.

3927 Absence of trains wdnt. stop him.

3928 So we left him at last in Chiasso

3929 Along with the old woman from Kansas,

3930 Solid Kansas, her daughter had married that Swiss

3931 Who kept the buffet in Chiasso.

3932 Did it shake her? It did not shake her.

3933 She sat there in the waiting room, solid Kansas,

3934 Stiff as a cigar-store indian from the Bowery

3935 Such as one saw in "the nineties",

3936 First sod of bleeding Kansas

3937 That had produced this ligneous solidness;

3938 If thou wilt go to Chiasso wilt find that indestructable female

3939 As if waiting for the train to Topeka

3940 In the buffet of that station on the bench that

3941 Follows the wall, to the right side as you enter.

3942 And Clara Leonora wd. come puffing so that one

3943 Cd. hear her when she reached the foot of the stairs,

3944 Squared, chunky, with her crooked steel spectacles

3945 And her splutter and her face full of teeth

3946 And old Rennert wd. sigh heavily

3947 And look over the top of his lenses and

3948 She wd. arrive after due interval with a pinwheel

3949 Concerning Grillparzer or---pratzer

3950 Or whatever follow the Grill---, and il Gran Maestro

3951 Mr Liszt had come to the home of her parents

3952 And taken her on his prevalent knee and

3953 She held that a sonnet was a sonnet

3954 And ought never be destroyed,

3955 And had taken a number of courses
[Page 136]
3956 And continued with hope of degrees and

3957 Ended in a Baptist learnery

3958 Somewhere near the Rio Grande.

3959 And they wanted more from their women,

3960 Wanted 'em jacked up a little

3961 And sent over for teachers (Ceylon)

3962 So Loica went out and died there

3963 After her time in the post-Ibsen movement.

3964 And one day in Smith's room

3965 Or may be it was that 1908 medico's

3966 Put the gob in the fire-place

3967 Ole Byers and Feigenbaum and Joe Bromley,

3968 Joe hittin' the gob at 25 feet

3969 Every time, ping on the metal

3970 (Az ole man Comley wd. say: Boys! ...

3971 Never cherr terbakker! Hrwwkke tth!

3972 Never cherr terbakker!,

3973 "Missionaries," said Joe, "I was out back of Jaffa,

3974 I dressed in the costume, used to like the cafés,

3975 All of us settin' there on the ground,

3976 Pokes his head in the doorway: "Iz there any,"

3977 He says, "Gar'

3978 Damn

3979 Man here

3980 Thet kan speak ENGLISH?"

3981 Nobody said anything fer a while

3982 And then I said: "Hu er' you?"

3983 "I'm er misshernary I am"

3984 He sez, "chucked off a naval boat in Shanghaï.

3985 I worked at it three months, nothin' to live on."

3986 Beat his way overland.

3987 I never saw the twenty I lent him."

3988 Great moral secret service, plan, Tribune is told

3989 limit number to thirty thousand,

[Page 137]
3990 only highest type will be included,

3991 propaganda within ranks of the veterans,

3992 to keep within bounds when they come into

3993 contact with personal liberty ... with the french authorities ...

3994 that includes the Paris police ...

3995 Strengthen franco-american amity.

3996 NARCOTIC CHARGE: Frank Robert Iriquois

3997 gave his home Oklahoma City ... Expelled July 24 th.

3998 "Je suis ...

3999 (Across the bare planks of a diningroom in the Pyrenees)

4000 ... plus fort que ...

4001 ... le Boud-hah!"

4002 (No contradiction)

4003 "Je suis ...

4004 ... plus fort que le ...

4005 ... Christ!

4006 (No contradiction)

4007 "J'aurais ...

4008 aboli ...

4009 le poids!"

4010 (Silence, somewhat unconvinced.)

4011 And in his waste house, detritus,

4012 As it were the cast buttons of splendours,

4013 The harbour of Martinique, drawn every house, and in detail.

4014 Green shutters on half the houses,

4015 Half the thing still unpainted.

4016 "... sont

4017 "l'in .. fan ... terie KOH-

4018 lon-

4019 i-ale"

4020 voce tinnula

4021 "Ce sont les vieux Marsouins!"

4022 He made it, feitz Marcebrus, the words and the music,
[Page 138]
4023 Uniform out for Peace Day

4024 And that lie about the Tibetan temple

4025 (happens by the way to be true,

4026 they do carry you up on their shoulders) but

4027 Bad for his medical practice.

4028 "Retreat?" said Dr Wymans, "It was marrvelous ...

4029 Gallipoli ...

4030 Secret. Turks knew nothing about it.

4031 Uh! Helped me to get my wounded aboard."

4032 And that man sweat blood to put through that railway,

4033 And what he ever got out of it?

4034 And one day he drove down to the whorehouse

4035 Cause all the farmers had consented

4036 and granted the right of way,

4037 But the pornoboskos wdn't. have it at any price

4038 And said he'd shoot the surveyors,

4039 But he didn't shoot ole pop in the buckboard,

4040 He giv him the right of way.

4041 And they thought they had him flummox'd,

4042 Nobody'd sell any rails;

4043 Till he went up to the north of New York state

4044 And found some there on the ground

4045 And he had 'em pried loose and shipped 'em

4046 And had 'em laid here through the forest.

4047 Thing is to find something simple

4048 As for example Pa Stadtvolk;

4049 Hooks to hang gutters on roofs,

4050 A spike and half-circle, patented 'em and then made 'em;

4051 Worth a good million, not a book in the place;

4052 Got a horse about twenty years after, seen him

4053 Of a Saturday afternoon

4054 When they'd taken down an old fence,

4055 Ole Pa out there knockin the nails out

4056 (To save 'em). I hear he smoked good cigars.

[Page 139]
4057 And when the Prince Oltrepassimo died, saccone,

4058 That follow the coffins,

4059 He lay there on the floor of the chapel

4060 On a great piece of patterned brocade

4061 And the walls solid gold about him

4062 And there was a hole in one of his socks

4063 And the place open that day to the public,

4064 Kids running in from the street

4065 And a cat sat there licking himself

4066 And then stepped over the Principe,

4067 Discobolus upstairs and the main door

4068 Not opened since '70

4069 When the Pope shut himself into the Vatican

4070 And they had scales on the table

4071 To weigh out the food on fast days;

4072 And he lay there with his hood back

4073 And the hole in one of his socks.

4074 "Buk!" said the Second Baronet, "eh ...

4075 "Thass a funny lookin' buk" said the Baronet

4076 Looking at Bayle, folio, 4 vols. in gilt leather, "Ah ...

4077 "Wu ... Wu ... wot you goin' eh to do with ah ...

4078 "... ah read-it?"

4079 Sic loquitur eques.

4080 And lest it pass with the day's news

4081 Thrown out with the daily paper,

4082 Neither official pet

4083 Nor Levine with the lucky button

4084 Went on into darkness,

4085 Saw naught above but close dark,

4086 Weight of ice on the fuselage

4087 Borne into the tempest, black cloud wrapping their wings,

4088 The night hollow beneath them

4089 And fell with dawn into ocean
[Page 140]
4090 But for the night saw neither sky nor ocean

4091 And found ship ... why?... how?... by the Azores.

4092 And she was a bathing beauty, Miss Arkansas or Texas

4093 And the man (of course) quasi anonymous

4094 Neither a placard for non-smokers or non-alcohol

4095 Nor for the code of Peoria;

4096 Or one-eyed Hinchcliffe and Elsie

4097 Blackeyed bitch that married dear Dennis,

4098 That flew out into nothingness

4099 And her father was the son of one too

4100 That got the annulment.
[Page 141]


4101 Pearl, great sphere, and hollow,

4102 Mist over lake, full of sunlight,

4103 Pernella concubina

4104 The sleeve green and shot gold over her hand

4105 Wishing her son to inherit

4106 Expecting the heir ainé be killed in battle

4107 He being courageous, poisoned his brother puiné

4108 Laying blame on Siena

4109 And this she did by a page

4110 Bringing war once more on Pitigliano

4111 And the page repented and told this

4112 To Nicolo (ainé) Pitigliano

4113 Who won back that rock from his father

4114 "still doting on Pernella his concubine".

4115 The sand that night like a seal's back

4116 Glossy beneath the lanthorns.

4117 From the Via Sacra

4118 (fleeing what band of Tritons)

4119 Up to the open air

4120 Over that mound of the hippodrome:

4121 Liberans et vinculo ab omni liberatos

4122 As who with four hands at the cross roads

4123 By king's hand or sacerdos'

4124 are given their freedom

4125 ---Save who were at Castra San Zeno ...

4126 Cunizza for God's love, for remitting the soul of her father

4127 ---May hell take the traitors of Zeno.

4128 And fifth begat he Alberic

4129 And sixth the Lady Cunizza.
[Page 142]

4130 In the house of the Cavalcanti

4131 anno 1265:

4132 Free go they all as by full manumission

4133 All serfs of Eccelin my father da Romano

4134 Save those who were with Alberic at Castra San Zeno

4135 And let them go also

4136 The devils of hell in their body.

4137 And sixth the Lady Cunizza

4138 That was first given Richard St Boniface

4139 And Sordello subtracted her from that husband

4140 And lay with her in Tarviso

4141 Till he was driven out of Tarviso

4142 And she left with a soldier named Bonius

4143 nimium amorata in eum

4144 And went from one place to another

4145 "The light of this star o'ercame me"

4146 Greatly enjoying herself

4147 And running up the most awful bills.

4148 And this Bonius was killed on a sunday

4149 and she had then a Lord from Braganza

4150 and later a house in Verona.

4151 And he looked from the planks to heaven,

4152 Said Juventus: "Immortal ...

4153 He said: "Ten thousand years before now ...

4154 Or he said: "Passing into the point of the cone

4155 You begin by making the replica.

4156 Thus Lusty Juventus, in September,

4157 In cool air, under sky,

4158 Before the residence of the funeral director

4159 Whose daughters' conduct caused comment.

4160 But the old man did not know how he felt

4161 Nor cd. remember what prompted the utterance.

4162 He said: "What I know, I have known,

4163 "How can the knowing cease knowing?"
[Page 143]
4164 By the lawn of the senior elder

4165 He continued his ambulation:

4166 "Matter is the lightest of all things,

4167 "Chaff, rolled into balls, tossed, whirled in the aether,

4168 "Undoubtedly crushed by the weight,

4169 "Light also proceeds from the eye;

4170 "In the globe over my head

4171 "Twenty feet in diameter, thirty feet in diameter

4172 "Glassy, the glaring surface---

4173 "There are many reflections

4174 "So that one may watch them turning and moving

4175 "With heads down now, and now up.

4176 He went on toward the amateur student of minerals

4177 That later went bankrupt;

4178 He went on past the house of the local funny man,

4179 Jo Tyson that had a camera. His daughter was bow-legged

4180 And married the assembly-man's son.

4181 O-hon dit que-ke fois au vi'-a-ge ...

4182 Past the house of the three retired clergymen

4183 Who were too cultured to keep their jobs.

4184 Languor has cried unto languor

4185 about the marshmallow-roast

4186 (Let us speak of the osmosis of persons)

4187 The wail of the phonograph has penetrated their marrow

4188 (Let us ...

4189 The wail of the pornograph....)

4190 The cicadas continue uninterrupted.

4191 With a vain emptiness the virgins return to their homes

4192 With a vain exasperation

4193 The ephèbe has gone back to his dwelling,

4194 The djassban has hammered and hammered,

4195 The gentleman of fifty has reflected

4196 That it is perhaps just as well.

4197 Let things remain as they are.

[Page 144]
4198 The mythological exterior lies on the moss in the forest

4199 And questions him about Darwin.

4200 And with a burning fire of phantasy

4201 he replies with "Deh! nuvoletta ..."

4202 So that she would regret his departure.

4203 Drift of weed in the bay:

4204 She seeking a guide, a mentor,

4205 He aspires to a career with honour

4206 To step in the tracks of his elders;

4207 a greater incomprehension?

4208 There is no greater incomprehension

4209 Than between the young and the young.

4210 The young seek comprehension;

4211 The middleaged to fulfill their desire.

4212 Sea weed dried now, and now floated,

4213 mind drifts, weed, slow youth, drifts,

4214 Stretched on the rock, bleached and now floated;

4215 Wein, Weib, TAN AOIDAN

4216 Chiefest of these the second, the female

4217 Is an element, the female

4218 Is a chaos

4219 An octopus

4220 A biological process

4221 and we seek to fulfill ...

4222 TAN AOIDAN, our desire, drift ...

4223 Ailas e que'm fau miey huelh

4224 Quar no vezon so qu'ieu vuelh.

4225 Our mulberry leaf, woman, TAN AOIDAN,

4226 "Nel ventre tuo, o nella mente mia,

4227 "Yes, Milady, precisely, if you wd.

4228 have anything properly made."

4229 "Faziamo tutte le due ...

4230 "No, not in the palm-room". The lady says it is

4231 Too cold in the palm-room. Des valeurs,

[Page 145]
4232 Nom de Dieu, et

4233 encore des valeurs.

4234 She is submarine, she is an octopus, she is

4235 A biological process,

4236 So Arnaut turned there

4237 Above him the wave pattern cut in the stone

4238 Spire-top alevel the well-curb

4239 And the tower with cut stone above that, saying:

4240 "I am afraid of the life after death."

4241 and after a pause:

4242 "Now, at last, I have shocked him."

4243 And another day or evening toward sundown by the arena

4244 (les gradins)

4245 A little lace at the wrist

4246 And not very clean lace either ...

4247 And I, "But this beats me,

4248 "Beats me, I mean that I do not understand it;

4249 "This love of death that is in them."

4250 Let us consider the osmosis of persons

4251 nondum orto jubare;

4252 The tower, ivory, the clear sky

4253 Ivory rigid in sunlight

4254 And the pale clear of the heaven

4255 Phoibos of narrow thighs,

4256 The cut cool of the air,

4257 Blossom cut on the wind, by Helios

4258 Lord of the Light's edge, and April

4259 Blown round the feet of the God,

4260 Beauty on an ass-cart

4261 Sitting on five sacks of laundry

4262 That wd. have been the road by Perugia

4263 That leads out to San Piero. Eyes brown topaz,

4264 Brookwater over brown sand,

4265 The white hounds on the slope,

[Page 146]
4266 Glide of water, lights and the prore,

4267 Silver beaks out of night,

4268 Stone, bough over bough,

4269 lamps fluid in water,

4270 Pine by the black trunk of its shadow

4271 And on hill black trunks of the shadow

4272 The trees melted in air.
[Page 147]


4273 Compleynt, compleynt I hearde upon a day,

4274 Artemis singing, Artemis, Artemis

4275 Agaynst Pity lifted her wail:

4276 Pity causeth the forests to fail,

4277 Pity slayeth my nymphs,

4278 Pity spareth so many an evil thing.

4279 Pity befouleth April,

4280 Pity is the root and the spring.

4281 Now if no fayre creature followeth me

4282 It is on account of Pity,

4283 It is on account that Pity forbideth them slaye.

4284 All things are made foul in this season,

4285 This is the reason, none may seek purity

4286 Having for foulnesse pity

4287 And things growne awry;

4288 No more do my shaftes fly

4289 To slay. Nothing is now clean slayne

4290 But rotteth away.

4291 In Paphos, on a day

4292 I also heard:

4293 ... goeth not with young Mars to playe

4294 But she hath pity on a doddering fool,

4295 She tendeth his fyre,

4296 She keepeth his embers warm.

4297 Time is the evil. Evil.

4298 A day, and a day

4299 Walked the young Pedro baffled,

4300 a day and a day

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