What Rough Beast | Poem for July 15, 2017

Tom Daley

The fire contaminates the drone’s
rounded pursuit.

A pillar where the ancient favor
lost its curve.

To cradle is an old cliché,
something framed

from difficult preoccupations,
from different hugenesses—

the basket in the bulrushes,
for example,

sinking from the weight
of the stone tablets

imagined, between sleep
and discovery,

in the infant pilot’s hand.


Tom Daley is the author of House You Cannot Reach—Poems in the Voice of My Mother and Other Poems (FutureCycle Press, 2015). His poetry has appeared in Harvard Review, Massachusetts Review, 32 Poems, Fence, Denver Quarterly, Crazyhorse, Barrow Street, Prairie Schooner, Witness, Poetry Ireland Review, and other journals, as well as in the anthologies Hacks: Ten Years on Grub Street (Random House, 2007); Poets for Haiti (Yileen Press, 2010); The Body Electric (CreateSpace, 2013); and Luminous Echoes (Into the Void, 2017). He leads writing workshops in the Boston area and online for poets and writers working in creative prose.

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