Plato Dreamed by Matthew James Babcock

Plato Dreamed
by Matthew James Babcock

before he died that his soul
assumed the supple form
of a swan as nimble as
an impulse, darting through
trees, so swift and subtle
no crafty Greek fowler
could bag or wing him
with whistling sling
or glittering crossbow bolt.
Is it heaven never to be netted?
What lyrical recitation
of your sleek evasions
will absorb you into dialogues
with thunder in the clouds?
Iā€™m close to believing
a skipping movie projector
will cast my death dream
on laundered bedsheets
rippling on a slack line
behind a gaunt ranch house
under the lavender skies
of an austere summer fanned
with the charred scent
of hot tar and burning weeds:
the scene where I return
as the giant tortoise,
over one hundred fifty years
old, at the tourist trap
in South Dakota where we stopped
early in the bold prologue
to our history when our small
children still thrilled
at the myths I breathed,
and my routine philosophies
roused in them the most
transcendent teaching, the lowest
limbs of their happiness
too high for my reaching. 

Submit your polished poetry for the opportunity of being published on and being interviewed on The Viewless Wings Poetry Podcast.

Idahoan. Writer. Failed breakdancer.

Books: Points of Reference (Folded Word); Strange Terrain (Mad Hat); Heterodoxologies (Educe Press); Four Tales of Troubled Love (Harvard Square Editions); Future Perfect (forthcoming, Engine Books, 2022); Hidden Motion (forthcoming, Finishing Line Press, 2022).

Awards: Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry ($5,000); Juxtaprose Poetry ($500); Lucidity Magazine Poetry ($1.00).

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