The pressure on us was something immense:

to make suffering beautiful our task,
to carve meaning onto friezes so tense,
whereupon stone figures frolic and frisk:
Relief was low, evasive and sunken,
like a fleet of overburdened cruise ships
that merged with the horizon while drunken
fishermen kissed the stars with salty lips:
The air was purple – it was a good night;
the moon had just left its baby fullness,
and old cycles had tottered out of sight,
and a new oppression was upon us:
Where we failed before to sketch our vision,
we must make sense of our indiscretion.
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