Harold Bloom’s Old Age (appeared in Yemassee)
In my hands, the canon found a friend dear,
I pray; my memory-stained evening candle
fanned the fire Cervantes lit, and Shakespeare,
and Dante and Keats, all who’d manhandle
trivial fate in its fiendish sparks of life.
It was not a consumptive Mann I met
on that Magic Mountain, or in the strife
of Venice, where death was the strangest fete.
No, it was a summer shower, when Wilde
whispered in praise of my fleshy memory:
You’ll have prophesied our God-wounds, dear child,
you’ll have lost our collective victory.
Oh, count me your strong acolyte, your fan!
I’ve shadowed the lively symbol’s wing span.
If I’ve lived at all, I’ve counted my breaths,
as each day I’ve murdered my sad Macbeths.