Most explicit--
the sense of trap
as a narrowing
cone one's got
stuck into and
any movement
forward simply
wedges once more--
but where
or quite when,
even with whom,
since now there is no one
quite with you--Quite? Quiet?
English expression: Quait?
Language of singular
impedance? A dance? An
involuntary gesture to
others not there? What's
wrong here? How
reach out to the
other side all
others live on as
now you see the
two doctors, behind
you, in mind's eye,
probe into your anus,
or ass, or bottom,
behind you, the roto-
rooter-like device
sees all up, concludes
"like a worn-out inner tube,"
"old," prose prolapsed, person's
problems won't do, must
cut into, cut out . . .
The world is a round but
diminishing ball, a spherical
ice cube, a dusty
joke, a fading,
faint echo of its
former self but remembers,
sometimes, its past, sees
friends, places, reflections,
talks to itself in a fond,
judgemental murmur,
alone at last.
I stood so close
to you I could have
reached out and
touched you just
as you turned
over and began to
snore not unattractively,
no, never less than
attractively, my love,
my love--but in this
curiously glowing dark, this
finite emptiness, you, you, you
are crucial, hear the
whimpering back of
the talk, the approaching
fears when I may
cease to be me, all
lost or rather lumped
here in a retrograded,
dislocating, imploding
self, a uselessness
talks, even if finally to no one,
talks and talks.
From Selected Poems by Robert Creeley. Copyright © 1991 by The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved. Used with permission. Originally published in Windows (New Directions, 1990).

Poems by This Author

A Poem by Robert Creeley
If the water forms
A Wicker Basket by Robert Creeley
Comes the time when it's later
America by Robert Creeley
America, you ode for reality!
Kore by Robert Creeley
As I was walking
The Heart by Robert Creeley
Water Music by Robert Creeley
The words are a beautiful music.

Further Reading

Poems About Aging
Abandonment Under the Walnut Tree
by D. A. Powell
by Donald Hall
Age and Death
by Emma Lazarus
Almost Sixty
by Jim Moore
Beyond the Years
by Paul Laurence Dunbar
by Elizabeth Alexander
Demeter in Paris
by Meghan O'Rourke
by John Koethe
El Dorado
by Edgar Allan Poe
Fear of the Future
by John Koethe
First Gestures
by Julia Spicher Kasdorf
Fixed Interval
by Devin Johnston
by Billy Collins
by T.S. Eliot
Get Up, Please
by David Kirby
In View of the Fact
by A. R. Ammons
Looking Back in My Eighty-First Year
by Maxine Kumin
by Sara Teasdale
My Lost Youth
by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
My Skeleton
by Jane Hirshfield
Poem at Thirty
by Michael Ryan
by Effie Waller Smith
by Tony Hoagland
Refusing at Fifty-Two to Write Sonnets
by Thomas Lynch
Rock Me to Sleep
by Elizabeth Akers Allen
by Adam Zagajewski
Since Nine—
by C. P. Cavafy
The Chicago Poem
by Jerome Rothenberg
The Edges of Time
by Kay Ryan
The Human Seasons
by John Keats
The Tower
by W. B. Yeats
The Widows of Gravesend
by L. S. Asekoff
The Young Man's Song
by W. B. Yeats
this kind of fire
by Charles Bukowski
To a Young Girl at a Window
by Margaret Widdemer
To Chloe: Who for his sake wished herself younger
by William Cartwright
To Earthward
by Robert Frost
to my last period
by Lucille Clifton
To Think of Time
by Walt Whitman
Two Horses and a Dog
by James Galvin
When You are Old
by W. B. Yeats