A.F. MORITZ

 

A. F. Moritz's most recent book is a long poem, Sequence (House of Anansi Press). His poetry has received the Award in Literature of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Guggenheim Fellowship, the Griffin Poetry Prize, the Bess Hokin Prize of Poetry magazine, the Ingram Merrill Fellowship, the ReLit Award, the Raymond Souster Award of the League of Canadian Poets, and other honours. Three of his books have been finalists for the Governor General's Award.

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CREATING DESPAIR

 

You’ve come into an age of colorlessness.
But isn’t grey a color like any other?
No. Not this. There are melodies that are tuneless,
beats without rhythm, that in their regularity
and their violations fail to be a rhythm.
You have your melody, a true one,
your mazy beautiful ongoing into night and day
and you have your pulse and heartbeat that are still
the rhythm of life, though it stutters now...
or because it stutters. But the colorlessness
muffles them—the tone of ash
wind-dried, wind-lifted and laid back loosely,
thickly over some bulk.
Not even wet ash with its striations
of black, charcoal and white dun,
its erased modelling like remains of the pictograph
of a fall. This toneless time
moves without motion—an old woman’s movement,
who attempts to get up a step to a door.
Or does she? Is she there at all?
Her face, hair, coat and legs
all one color, the same color as tonight’s light
as it turns into lightlessness...
it was your commiseration, your fear,
that created in your vision
as though truly in your eyes
this being and her struggle on that background.