Collected Poems of John Holmes
Holmes, John A., Jr.
Poetry is a re-assembly by one who stole the secret,
Of people and things as they had meant to be.
Poetry is a complete record of the feeling you have
When you shut your eyes, and clench your fist,
And make an "oh!" of longing, the muscles of
Your throat held taut.
Poetry is what you thought about when you were a
Child, somehow not forgotten in the business
Of growing up, and discovered to be true, and
Valuable, and possible just as you always
Thought it was.
Poetry is the consciousness a high-jumper has at
The instant he clears the bar of being in per-
fect form at the limit of his power; finding
When he touches ground that he has broken a record.
Poetry is a cry of wonder and despair upon seeing
what no systems of philosophy will solve, and
No religions speak of, man's utter loneliness,
His insignificance upon a star, looking up at other stars.
Poetry is the tremendous aching exultation of an
Architect who sees as a man in the street,
Poetry is the blue flash that jumps just before
the switch is closed and the current leaps
Along a new wire.
Poetry is a man's salute from the street to an air-
plane over head, imagining a thousand others
Waving with him, "Hello...!"