When the fur-denned eye of the trancing bear
Stuck with fantastic honey opens and sees
The broken dark of shadowy tomorrow
And the first growl of life blows hunger through
The fatty air of feastless winter’s dream
And the truth of claws and fleas and drool
And the scratch and hustle of the belly’s urge
Lumber that monstrous sleeping bag to stretch
And shake the fearful bludgeoning paws
Deft enough to spear the silver salmon,
Tough enough to fend the fee-tree’s bitter lance
And cruel enough to choke the pretty doe,
When such puissance uprises from such lumpen
Shamble, then a victory is won,
Not of the pure nor the ignoble,
But of that flesh which is the meat of stars,
That fist which flowers the bramble and milks
The Sun.

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This article originally appeared in The New Criterion, Volume 4 Number 2, on page 47
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