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Our language can be seen as an ancient
City—pace Wittgenstein—who  
Surely meant a baptized city, for
The names come only with the blessing…

And even though he boards in Muzot, finds
A seat with a window so he can watch
The rain, a pad and pen and swollen eyes—
His naming is no longer for the living,
He knows that. Squatting, old, narrow-gauge trains:
He studies his reflection in the dark tunnels
In the glass: There is swelling, that
Awful puffiness, rust in the throat…
Mimetic passion, not rocket science.

Darkling I listen; and, for many a time
    I have been half in love with easeful Death,
Call'd him soft names in many a mused rhyme,
    To take into the air my quiet breath;
Now more than ever seems it rich to die,
    To cease upon the midnight with no pain,
        While thou art pouring forth thy soul abroad
                In such an ecstasy!
    Still wouldst thou sing, and I have ears in vain -
        To thy high requiem become a sod.

Thus Keats, who, he reminds himself, wrote:
the rude
Wasting of old Time -with a billowy main,
A sun, a shadow of a magnitude.
Yet still it rains; the rails, become archaic
Through the Goddard Pass,
His final way of seeing mountain peaks .
In 1926 as the snow melts…
He stops.
The correspondence…

Tsvetayeva has written:  
Your name is poetry! Exclaims:
Your name is poetry! But she always
May I hail you like this!
Your baptism was the prologue to
The whole of you!

It even smells of death in this train. Dead mice
Under the seats. Why would Marina think
Of baptism here, his baptism?
Rilke, may I help you?
For baptism
Read death, read mort, but not for ‘mortal’, for
A mort is only played if some music
Is needed at the blessing. Mort:
A horn will sound announcing death,
A horn to announce a new beginning,
Of a life’s deep death in deep
Snow…wolves abound…and not a perfect trip
Through the Alps…

Marina Leukemia on his
Baptism into the ancient city:
Herr Rilke your very name
Is a poem. You are a phenomenon
Of nature. The poet who comes after you
Is you.

My dear, Rainer; my soul, my Maria,
My blood coagulates and sinks
Into the snow. I take to my heart:
One poet only lives, and now and then
Who bore him, and who bears him now, will meet.

And never meet. (There is one only) in
A lightning field, canaries in a cage—
How could we meet?
The world betrays us,
I know, for a field of fire, for poetry
Is correspondence from a great distance
Made only greater by our love.
Great honor, great poet,
(signed) Not for reading. Marina.

(July, 2009)
© Jim Kleinhenz
 Nov 2017 Nick Huber
Erica Jong
For Naomi Lazard

Sometimes I can't wait until I look like Nadezhda Mandelstam.
-- Naomi Lazard

My friends are tired.
The ones who are married are tired
of being married.
The ones who are single are tired
of being single.

They look at their wrinkles.
The ones who are single attribute their wrinkles
to being single.
The ones who are married attribute their wrinkles
to being married.

They have very few wrinkles.
Even taken together,
they have very few wrinkles.
But I cannot persuade them
to look at their wrinkles
& I cannot persuade them that being married
or being single
has nothing to do with wrinkles.

Each one sees a deep & bitter groove,
a San Andreas fault across her forehead.
"It is only a matter of time
before the earthquake."
They trade the names of plastic surgeons
like recipes.

My friends are tired.
The ones who have children are tired
of having children.
The ones who are childless are tired
of being childless.

They love their wrinkles.
If only their were deeper
they could hide.

Sometimes I think
(but do not dare to tell them)
that when the face is left alone to dig its grave,
the soul is grateful
& rolls in.
I shall forget you presently, my dear,
So make the most of this, your little day,
Your little month, your little half a year,
Ere I forget, or die, or move away,
And we are done forever; by and by
I shall forget you, as I said, but now,
If you entreat me with your loveliest lie
I will protest you with my favorite vow.
I would indeed that love were longer-lived,
And vows were not so brittle as they are,
But so it is, and nature has contrived
To struggle on without a break thus far,—
Whether or not we find what we are seeking
Is idle, biologically speaking.
 Nov 2017 Nick Huber
 Nov 2017 Nick Huber
Figured you had enough
because I'm alone.
Dialing to call your bluff
but there is no tone.
You think you wanted more,
but I could've shown you more.

Figured I fell too deep
in the abyss of my dreams.
Underwater underworld,
don't wake me from sleep.
Figured that you figured me out,
but nothing's what it seems.

Prescribe me prescriptions
to bottle these emotions,
devour my devotion
and keep refills in motion.
Above the surface is dry
but underneath is an ocean.
 Aug 2016 Nick Huber
Joe Nemec
Help me to understand, So close and yet so far apart.
The fleeting moments together bring much bliss.  
The days apart seems like years of pain.  
What is this thing that man creates that can feel so good and feel so bad.
 Aug 2016 Nick Huber
Joe Nemec
While visiting the gravesite of my once good friend Kathryn Kuhlman, I came across this on a nearby headstone. I was so moved.
"In life we weep at the thought of death, perhaps in death we weep at the thought of life"  
As time goes by, I understand this more and more.
 Aug 2016 Nick Huber
Joe Nemec
Is pain a bad thing?
Most believe it is.
Perhaps it's not necessarily bad.
Could it be a doorway to see the value of good?
How can one truly appreciate good,
if you had never experienced pain.
 Jul 2016 Nick Huber
Joe Nemec
Darkness so deep, will no light penetrate.
The many walls so high, will no man scale.
A place darkness need not hide.
Is it all to keep out the light
or darkness not to show.
 Jul 2016 Nick Huber
Joe Nemec
If you pull away the curtain
will you find romance
will you find love
will you find passion
will you find your hedonist desires fulfilled   
Or will you be surprised of what you find
Do you dare look behind the curtain.
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