Sunrise tree
This poem, published in the New York Times in July of 1971, may have spelled the doom of poetry on the editorial page of the Times. The week following its publication the poetry section of the editorial page was replaced by a guest "editorial" by Mobile Oil and poetry never returned. I apologize for this.

Photographing a Caterpillar or,
How Two Magicians Met

I stoop, crouch, fetalize myself
Around my machine, but even
My best intentions are too large
To crowd into his small world.

The idea of permanency arrests him,
But then he wrinkles on his way
To more important things, like
Spinning himself into butterflight.

With mechanico-chemical magic
I can spin light to sculpture
His attitudes for me on plastic
And never bother memory.

Still, it lays on my mind
That I can only photograph.
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