Bob Davies
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Mimeo Poems

[These poems were "published" by Stephen Carpenter in mimeograph form circa 1970, when Steve was 18. They appear to have been final versions of evolved drafts in his notebook(s). Perhaps because he was so theatrically parsimonious, he squeezed the poetry onto each of two pages since even mimeo may have seemed extravagant. Aligned horizontally, each line was delineated by a slash (/). Now, in 2000, when reproduction costs are slight, they are presented vertically, as aligned in his handwritten drafts. G. Imrie]

that final realization

after years of waiting for some proof

(they were long)

i made the realization

that it was not i

who will save us

or lead us

it will be someone else

and i was so sure

this poet writes

listen to me now

i may even be profound

i'm young and have much to tell

but i can't piece it all together yet

i'm only a beginner at this

i don't deserve capitals

and punctuation

like the masters

please listen

maybe someday

i'll have more to say

there is still time

finally i can say

even

god

while resting on the seventh day

after six days of creating

could not feel more contented

than i do now --

if a feeling like this

should ever leave my heart

i will surely

be no more

the others

it's good to think

that someday

i'll be dead

like all the others

sometimes i've wondered

if i might just be

that first unlucky one

to the rabbit

to the rabbit

that i ran over

on the road

the other day

know now

that i didn't feel

as the others do

after killing you

i would have cried

for you

but i knew

you were already gone

when it's over

and when this is all over

only then

will they know

but will i

a walk in the park

the day

i wandered

through my park

and looked up

at my trees

i wondered

how the trees used to feel

without me there

will i be given

will i be given

the time necessary

to make enough mistakes

to be wise someday

so that i may hang out

my shingle reading

"answers

to the more important questions

given here"

my favorite poem

my favorite poem is

the one i scratched out

and can no longer read

when the dreams fail

when my dreams fail

and my limitations are set

i'll be swept into my next phase

[next page, of two original pages of mimeos]

tree in the woods

i used to dream

of having a tree

deep in the woods

to which i'd take

my special friends

to carve their initials

but i dreamed many things

[Since Steve wrote this years before concentrating on Yeats' poetry, would he have known about Yeats' autograph tree yet? See the first few paragraphs of this review link. http://www.theatlantic.com/issues/97nov/yeats.htm]

searching

while working in the ice cream store

i used to search each child's face

wondering if he could be experiencing

just what i did at his age

i never found him though

the store was open years before i worked there

and I wonder if in that time

someone searched my face

looking for me

calling me another

i smile at them

they keep telling me

that others have experienced

what i feel now

and that others have had

my frustrations

and even my dreams

then they always add

that in the end

for everyone's sake

i'll be just another

but i can't believe that yet

and they laugh at me

if they only knew

if they only knew

who is walking

down their halls

singing to himself

tribute to the mountain

i had a tribute planned

to be left

on the mountain

that i was to conquer

but i never even

reached it

[Steve's last mountain, Ben Bulben, viewed from Rosses Point, outside Sligo, Ireland.] http://www.petergillen.com/rossespoint/rp13.JPG ]

all that i wish

all that i wish

is to have

a little time

to have my peace

i've probably

been given

too much

already