Image result for cypress in the lake in painting

If beauty speaks,

It speaks, and then it dies.

Beauty perishes.

What beauty can my poetry save?

It is vanity that my poetry tries?

Is beauty most serene when brave?

Does the cypress apologize to the lake,

Its reflection repetitive and still?

What beauty can I possibly make?

What beauty can my poem fill

With beauty, and which beauty will this forsake?

Is beauty mine, by no accident? By my own will?

For I have seen beauty casually in a handful of leaves

Be so beautiful, beauty itself almost grieves

That beauty is a ghost, which no one believes.

Everything you say

Can be disputed.

So every poem must die—

Unless it makes you laugh—

Or if it makes you cry.




  1. August 11, 2017 at 6:45 am

    L5 – Is it “It is”? Is it?

    • thomasbrady said,

      August 11, 2017 at 2:16 pm

      Good catch. It is “Is it”—I noticed the error yesterday, but the error is growing on me…because of the way we read, I’m sure 9 in 10 read it as “Is it” even though it is “It is.” Of course that’s not a reason not to change it. “It is vanity that my poetry tries?” almost sounds more desperate and doubtful than the “correct” version, which I like, so I may leave it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: