How many dawns you stood to watch the Bridge
Usher the sun from Brooklyn to New York,
Or how many dawns the Beauty of His Face
Entranced you with that white pervasive smile,
I know not; nor have these quick forty years
Changed the Changeless the Twentieth rolls on,
The hustler's at his corner and the boys
Still wind themselves to Wall Street's karmic tick.
Aloft new steel-winged astronauts doth soar,
While underground demonic subways roar
And sweltering masses advertise our doom
Here no tokens of the heart, nor love can bloom.
Yes, Grecian sex and rum would drive you mad
As they did yesterday. Greenwich Village
Still sells bodies, books, and promises new fads,
Though "Bolero" and the bottle you might trade
For rock 'n' roll and cubes of LSD
Have to keep up Twentieth Century Limited,
You know, roars fast to keep your prophecy:
"Kiss of our agony, thou gatherest,
O Hand of Fire gatherest," and now the bombs
Multiply like weekly subway ads
While Bowery bums blow spindrift off their beer.
That typewriter won't type Sanscrit, Hart! Oh
Take a boat. Why not? The season's ripe,
His sovereign Smile is beckoning on His foam…
Why even now I catch His breezes fresh,
Gifts of seahorse couriers winged home.
"The bottom of the sea is cruel," you say,
But knowing Greybeard's promise you take off
Your coat and jump O brave, eternal, true
Is His strong azure Breast that catches you.