Wednesday 12 October 2022

Two Poems by Bruce Morton


Museum (Berlin)

The first exhibit
Ancient Greece
Strikes you square
Before entering
Antiquity, old wall
Limestone block,
Skin pock-marked
By a red plague
Of Russian arms
Not inoculated
To appreciate
Achaean spear
Or cold-war fear


Statues of imitation
We are, each of us,
Poseurs posing,
Striking poses struck,
In search of a pedestal.
Others seek the floor.

Some of us, they say,
Began as a lump of clay.
Were nothing at all
Before the first handful
Was laid on and shaped
By poke, pinch, and punch.

Then there are those
Who have become bronze,
Shining in the spot light.
No need to audition
Before being cast.
They are made to last.

In the block resides all
Waiting to be discovered,
Such intensity in density.
Stone or wood is chipped
And scraped until what
Remains becomes us.

All is form that informs,
Carve and curve made
From nothing into something
Transformed. We draw on
What? Inspiration, awe,
Imagination, steady hand.

Bruce Morton divides his time between Montana and Arizona. His poems have appeared in many magazines. He was formerly dean of the Montana State University library.

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