Thursday, February 16, 2017

Sometimes You Write with Showy Eloquence

Sometimes you write with showy eloquence – or with what
you imagine might be that – as much a fantasy as thinking
you know Latin very well, thank you; or poignantly believing
you’re an upper-middle-class brash Dubliner
who went to Magdalen to become the prima facie literary
heir to Oscar Wilde – another sublimated wild desire,

which you make certain to keep out of view of anyone
who’d know the difference. Hoping for a canny guise
or some syntactical deliverance you use the second person
pronoun you a lot, don’t you. The damnedest, direst, maybe
most profoundly tragic tiredness of all is that, so far,
you’ve not inscribed a single sentence even you

could possibly describe as eloquent. The truth is that
the only element of eloquence you’ve known resides inside
a world you own: the world you give the word itself:
pronouncing it invokes the elegant pit-patter of belles lettres
falling on the soul comme la pluie d’automne de Paris:
self-evidently elegant. By eloquent, that’s what you meant.


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