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Points in Time

(1971)


by Louis Daniel Brodsky

 

The Fate of a Poet No Longer in Vogue

Nouns that were proper cease to be of consequence,
For the density that enshrouds published sensibilities.
In an age crowded with greenhouse poets and preachers,
The laity pays lip service to his untended cenotaph.

He is the vehicle brought out on a dusty tray
To be displayed and bought by arcane curators
Who value the perfect stasis of his antique forms.
Yet, alliterations are underbid in this auction room,

Rhymes die on his end-stopped face, and steeples plummet
To pedestals that once held the graceful weight of God.
Syllables erode; worms undermine his oblique conceits;
Decay gains ground on the body’s critical verbs.

With a loud squeak, a naked savage is laid to sleep
At the base of an extinct metaphor portending upheaval.

 



Summary:

Points in Time is a volume of poetry Brodsky wrote over five distinct periods of his life. Its chronologically arranged pieces are divided into parts defined by the geographical location in which he spent each period, including St. Louis, San Francisco, a "limbo" in Wisconsin, St. Louis again, and finally Farmington, Missouri, and Florida. A pivotal book serving as "a coronation of the forgotten soul," it follows the writer’s personal and vocational growth, chronicling his transition from "apprenticeship" to professional poetry writing.







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