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Best Famous Donald Justice Poems

Here is a collection of the all-time best famous Donald Justice poems. This is a select list of the best famous Donald Justice poetry. Reading, writing, and enjoying famous Donald Justice poetry (as well as classical and contemporary poems) is a great past time. These top poems are the best examples of Donald Justice poems.

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by Donald Justice | |

Absences

 It's snowing this afternoon and there are no flowers.
There is only this sound of falling, quiet and remote, Like the memory of scales descending the white keys Of a childhood piano--outside the window, palms! And the heavy head of the cereus, inclining, Soon to let down its white or yellow-white.
Now, only these poor snow-flowers in a heap, Like the memory of a white dress cast down .
.
.
So much has fallen.
And I, who have listened for a step All afternoon, hear it now, but already falling away, Already in memory.
And the terrible scales descending On the silent piano; the snow; and the absent flowers abounding.


by Donald Justice | |

Bus Stop

 Lights are burning 
In quiet rooms 
Where lives go on 
Resembling ours.
The quiet lives That follow us— These lives we lead But do not own— Stand in the rain So quietly When we are gone, So quietly .
.
.
And the last bus Comes letting dark Umbrellas out— Black flowers, black flowers.
And lives go on.
And lives go on Like sudden lights At street corners Or like the lights In quiet rooms Left on for hours, Burning, burning.


by Donald Justice | |

Ode To A Dressmakers Dummy

 Papier-mache body; blue-and-black cotton jersey cover.
Metal stand.
Instructions included.
-- Sears, Roebuck Catalogue O my coy darling, still You wear for me the scent Of those long afternoons we spent, The two of us together, Safe in the attic from the jealous eyes Of household spies And the remote buffooneries of the weather; So high, Our sole remaining neighbor was the sky, Which, often enough, at dusk, Leaning its cloudy shoulders on the sill, Used to regard us with a bored and cynical eye.
How like the terrified, Shy figure of a bride You stood there then, without your clothes, Drawn up into So classic and so strict a pose Almost, it seemed, our little attic grew Dark with the first charmed night of the honeymoon.
Or was it only some obscure Shape of my mother's youth I saw in you, There where the rude shadows of the afternoon Crept up your ankles and you stood Hiding your sex as best you could?-- Prim ghost the evening light shone through.


by Donald Justice | |

The Assassination

 It begins again, the nocturnal pulse.
It courses through the cables laid for it.
It mounts to the chandeliers and beats there, hotly.
We are too close.
Too late, we would move back.
We are involved with the surge.
Now it bursts.
Now it has been announced.
Now it is being soaked up by newspapers.
Now it is running through the streets.
The crowd has it.
The woman selling carnations And the man in the straw hat stand with it in their shoes.
Here is the red marquee it sheltered under.
Here is the ballroom, here The sadly various orchestra led By a single gesture.
My arms open.
It enters.
Look, we are dancing.


by Donald Justice | |

To A Ten-Months Child

 Late arrival, no
One would think of blaming you
For hesitating so.
Who, setting his hand to knock At a door so strange as this one, Might not draw back?


by Donald Justice | |

Men At Thirty

 Thirty today, I saw
The trees flare briefly like
The candles upon a cake
As the sun went down the sky,
A momentary flash
Yet there was time to wish

Before the break light could die
If I had known what to wish
As once I must have known
Bending above the clean candlelit tablecloth
To blow them out with a breath


by Donald Justice | |

A Birthday Candle

 Thirty today, I saw
The trees flare briefly like
The candles on a cake,
As the sun went down the sky,
A momentary flash,
Yet there was time to wish


by Donald Justice | |

Men At Forty

 Men at forty
Learn to close softly
The doors to rooms they will not be
Coming back to.
At rest on a stair landing, They feel it Moving beneath them now like the deck of a ship, Though the swell is gentle.
And deep in mirrors They rediscover The face of the boy as he practices tying His father's tie there in secret And the face of that father, Still warm with the mystery of lather.
They are more fathers than sons themselves now.
Something is filling them, something That is like the twilight sound Of the crickets, immense, Filling the woods at the foot of the slope Behind their mortgaged houses.


by Donald Justice | |

On The Death Of Friends In Childhood

 We shall not ever meet them bearded in heaven
Nor sunning themselves among the bald of hell;
If anywhere, in the deserted schoolyard at twilight,
forming a ring, perhaps, or joining hands
In games whose very names we have forgotten.
Come memory, let us seek them there in the shadows.


by Donald Justice | |

Loves Strategems

 But these maneuverings to avoid
The touching of hands,
These shifts to keep the eyes employed
On objects more or less neutral
(As honor, for time being, commands)
Will hardly prevent their downfall.
Stronger medicines are needed.
Already they find None of their strategems have succeeded, Nor would have, no, Not had their eyes been stricken blind, Hands cut off at the elbow.


by Donald Justice | |

A Map Of Love

 Your face more than others' faces
Maps the half-remembered places
I have come to I while I slept—
Continents a dream had kept
Secret from all waking folk
Till to your face I awoke,
And remembered then the shore,
And the dark interior.


by Donald Justice | |

In Bertrams Garden

 Jane looks down at her organdy skirt
As if it somehow were the thing disgraced,
For being there, on the floor, in the dirt,
And she catches it up about her waist,
Smooths it out along one hip,
And pulls it over the crumpled slip.
On the porch, green-shuttered, cool, Asleep is Bertram that bronze boy, Who, having wound her around a spool, Sends her spinning like a toy Out to the garden, all alone, To sit and weep on a bench of stone.
Soon the purple dark must bruise Lily and bleeding-heart and rose, And the little cupid lose Eyes and ears and chin and nose, And Jane lie down with others soon, Naked to the naked moon.