In Defense of Moles

Poems and poets are at once a springing, mole-like,
from the deep warmth of hibernation. The eyes accustomed
to the dark refocusing, recovering sight from disuse
through the amorphic field. Before sinking back
into a room of its own nesting where image
is stored for survival. Thematic threads a year-round coat.

The cold kept out is audience, wearing their skeletons
fresh from the British Museum. An already dead
past that they’ve coveted until English literature
exhausts all meaning, and becomes token for empire’s
nostalgic test series.

Far from imagining ourselves
the burden of their public consumerism of consensus that institutes the bones.
Simply to be a Nobody as Emily Dickinson so gloriously advertised,
with a "To Let" sign near the nearest hole.

A reappraisal —
not an isolation tank.
                       But a peephole.

The ability to be and to step back without becoming
the latest ism of your own curvature, your
audience's laughter and tears, Yeats' old age
Eliot's sewage disposal unit, Pound's manifesto-ism.
The expectedness of grand masters.

How much better then to be a mole
and choose the method and theme of sight
upon each act of breaking the surface.
Feeding a nest that lasts on the variety

                                     of waves that we can't always anticipate, being
                                     a mole emerging from a dark embrace.