there are words for every occasion,
every step forward’s paved direction,
when your sweet lips mark their digression—

snow melting off this Jerome’s statue,
here on Massachusetts Avenue,
rolls off his stone beard and through

to me—enslaved, so I won’t say saint,
though they look like tears—they ain’t—
but now I can see why some say poets paint.

look it up though, the monument to his submission—
not the relic of pagantry, but his bookish position;
low yet yearning, earning is ever the human condition.


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