Martha Rhodes


Poems By John Ashbery

As You Came From The Holy Land

And Ut Pictura Poesis is her Name

Objection Sustained


Objection Sustained

Like a French king, I
know and do not know what it is I am.
Suffering aimlessly, pointlessly,
I think I’m on spot right now.

Other margins will invite us
toward life, pull out the stops
on a day’s notice. Invitingly
the crowd stops, shrugs toward us,
passes some judgment.

Anyway, it happens this way.
The cane of ice slipped and cracked.
All my worldly belongings weren’t
so worldly anymore. Sometimes
in a dream the tremendous peachiness
of everything assaults you like a wave
you look back at, knowing
you saw it, already invested in
some otherness.

All of last week’s energy preceded
us into the maze. We could hear their
surprise up ahead but were determined
to unravel our own opinion
on key issues. Gradually I lost
access to these. I don’t know who the others are.
He died later in other films.





From PLANISPHERE (Ecco Books, 2009)







    Poetry Center Reading:
    Fall 2010