The Pilgrimage / Phillip Neal Tippin

          Part 36

We play upon immortality,
Stop to reckon, found
To have reckon’d right.

It’s hard to imagine the length of seven days
Before time was made,
The stretching out of the idea of an instant
Over the face of a week.

The form of the furrow
Thorough and long.

The lovely lived shallows—
Oh, if only life was as shallow as it once was,
Better to see the face and so divine the heart.

To come before the Second Adam
Within His garden to be named.


          Part 37

Sleep a sonnet
Wake a free verse.

The intra-telos
Of walking uprightly.

Had I foreknown
My son would be a Kelvinist
With his scales
Trying to reduce the difficulty of zero…
To zero!

As every yes is a no,
On the whole, it seems,
I feel the no’s more
In the very routine yes
Of the others I know.

Only left with
A clefted eyeline


          Part 38

They mine for the rare earth
Stripping, boring dark despoiling holes
Yet a rare earth this morning rose
Lifting its eyes to mingle in the spring
Light, given again, unbidden, free.

Bare thee bold
Unto thy rest
My soul.

He died for the sins of the whole world
That any one might be saved, as,
Families are stoned together.

Many responses,
Fewer returnings.

These clear and shallow forms
Make it easier to find the floor,
But may also tend to raise
The self to the fore.


          Part 39

They said “take heart”
But I could not swallow
That pill, drink such sludge,
So I’ve brought it to You,
My Heart, to pour Your salt,
That at this Marah I may drink.

Language is that tribe of Levi
By which we ascend
Along His condescending Line.

The Intra-telos
Of speaking aloud

Play house
To make love
Homebound

The opacity of wealth,
Diminution,
Lachrimae magnificat,
Amplificāre.


          Part 40

Now in Christ
The hypocrisy
Is in the sin.

The book suddenly complete,
The cover closes,
Confined to sleep
Until in translation we may read.

My vocabulary
Goes beyond my memory

To follow in place—
A stayed pilgrimage.


All poetry and supplementary material: copyright 2020-2021 by Phillip Neal Tippin. All rights reserved.

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