There are sicknesses worse then sicknesses
There are sicknesses worse than sicknesses,
There are pains that do not ache, not even in the soul,
Yet are more painful than all the others.
These are anxietes dreamed of more real
Than those life brings to us, sensations
Felt only by imagining them,
More our own than life itself.
So many things exist without existing,
Exist, an linger on and on,
And on and on belong to us, and are us . . .
Over the turbid green of the wide-spreading river
The white curcumflexes of the gulls . . .
Over what never was, not ever can be, and that’s all.
Let me have more wine, life is nothing.
Put high walls around the part of you that dreams yourself,
Then place as many cheerful flowers as you can
There where the garden may be seen
Behind the gate, between the bars,
So they may recognize you this way only
Where no one sees it, put nothing.
Lay flower beds like those that others lay
and place them where eyes may spot
your garden as you plan to show it
But where you dwell and no one ever looks
Let flowers shoot up freely from the ground
and let the grass grow naturally.
Make of yourself a doubly sheltered being,
Soon one who looks or tries to see may
Know more than the garden that you are —
A garden private and ostensible,
Behind which common flowers lightly touch
Fine grass so spare not even you can spot it.