"Poet and veteran of childhood, look! See in me the obscene, for you have love,
For you have hatred, you, you must be judge, Deliver judgement, Delmore Schwartz.
Well-known wishes have been to war, The vicious mouth has chewed the vine.
The patient crab beneath the shirt Has charmed such interests as Indies meant.
For I have walked within and seen each sea, The fish that flies, the broken burning bird,
Born again, beginning again, my breast! Purple with persons like a tragic play.
For I have flown the cloud and fallen down, Plucked Venus, sneering at her moan.
I took the train that takes away remorse; I cast down every king like Socrates.
I knocked each nut to find the meat; A worm was there and not a mint.
Metaphysicians could have told me this, But each learns for himself, as in the kiss.
Polonius I poked, not him To whom aspires spire and hymn,
Who succors children and the very poor; I pierced the pompous Premier, not Jesus Christ,
I picked Polonius and Moby Dick, the ego bloomed into an octopus.
Now come I to the exhausted West at last; I know my vanity, my nothingness,
now I float will-less in despair's dead sea, Every man my enemy.
Spontaneous, I have too much to say, And what I say will no one not old see:
If we could love one another, it would be well. But as it is, I am sorry for the whole world, myself apart. My heart is full of memory and desire, and in its last nervousness, there is pity for those I have touched, but only hatred and contempt for myself."