Barry Spacks

Position Paper

We'd all be known by our loveliest needs.
Please never know me too fast, too soon.

I'm Chekhov, starving the inward slave:
feeder on fear, famished gnome.

I'm Alice, partly, and partly, God knows,
Regina Victoria, Groucho's grin...

and Joyce's Stephen on Sandymount Strand,
sparking the maidens, swirled cape and cane,

lately grown Bloom-sized, a fatherly man
who learns to practice breathing well

(in Japanese characters: SEI, sex;
SHO, essence; SEKI, will).

Intimidant of Father and
Exhabitant of Motherland,

like everyone else a special case,
I settle to sit in the wilderness

till even the timidest creatures pass,
taking me for a natural rock.

I was a stoker, a roaring boy,
become at last a friend to calm;

a violence somehow holding together,
intending only excessive care.

Like fireflies in the deep nights of summer
we're glowing, glowing, to find one another.

I'll play for the dusk on my wooden flute.
I'll not disappoint this fragrance.

Copyright 1996, Barry Spacks

Barry Spacks has seven poetry collections, the most recent of which are Brief Sparrow
(L.A. Press Illuminati, 1988) and Spacks Street: New and Selected Poems (Johns
Hopkins, 1982). His poetry has appeared in 18 anthologies and a multitude of
journals. He has written stories, essays, and reviews and is an NEA librettist grantee.
Mr. Spacks is a student of Lama Chagdud Tulku Rinpoche.