Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Hat Rack Tree

image borrowed from bing

The Hat Rack Tree

Your old hat
on the hat
rack tree
as the plumes
of the tree
grow dry
and wind unravels them.

"No wind
is the King's wind."

Now you go to buy some new
hat. Should it be
just like it?

A new hat sits like a plume
on the hat rack tree.

There is a bird
on that lady's hat.
Pluck its felt?
Or shred the brittle veil
that hangs from the brim?

It is a crow
(not my crow).
Something not alive
on the hat rack tree.

What can I do with this?
What can I sell?
Come all comers
to the hat rack tree
and see the lady's hat with black stuffed crow.

Odd--but the crow's eye lives
with terrible rays
and the feathers shine
with a glint of green--

Wind in the branches
wind in the plumes
strong enough to knock your
hat off. Knock your hats off.

If you were a King
and owned a tree
would you become a crow
with its terrible shining
and charm the wind
into your hat
and wear it
to see the world?

A lady's veil
conveys her shining.
She is nervous.
Nor does she glean
the thing on her hat.

Charles Stein

Posted over on Poems and Poetics

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