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Retrieved August 3, Retrieved July 10, Retrieved July 15, Retrieved July 12, Retrieved March 1, Retrieved February 28, Retrieved February 22, Struga Poetry Evenings.

The Whole Motion: Collected Poems, 1945-1992

Archived from the original on August 27, Retrieved November 17, Retrieved November 30, Globe and Mail. Toronto, Canada. Retrieved March 24, The Boston Globe. May 31, Retrieved June 27, Archived from the original on June 4, Retrieved June 5, The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved June 28, Retrieved December 21, Retrieved July 22, Chicago Tribune.

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Archived from the original on August 28, August 10, Archived from the original on August 19, Retrieved August 23, Poet Kills Self". New York Post. Archived from the original on August 21, The Washington Post.

Retrieved April 22, The Guardian. The New York Times. Retrieved December 22, The Times.


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Retrieved January 14, Retrieved December 10, You grow, then soar from the matted head And stretch toward night, swelling and foaming Into sparks, your leg-bone traversed By an incandescent angle of the pattern, Blue-white and fixed. The rest drops off. Down the long road where the aircraft break From dust, and wedge their wheels, There is no violence, and under the stumps Of the plantain wood you turn like stars, And a spring forces suddenly open, Shining and groaning, at your ear. A bulldozer moves with the sun downhill, Mice racing softly before the blade.

In, where wire-meshed bulbs are set, I hear the right hand of the sky Purl, withheld. Searchlights brim through heads Of horses masked and run in a field of flowers To the knife, on the shell of canvas: Men running, wading the leaves of shadow Strongly with their eyes. From hour to hour Medics bandage-roll and thread my calf Into the sea.

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Their needles buckle, slash, And hold to count; my nostril jerks at its hose; Light fastens to my shin. His blade Strikes on the sun let down through walls A man is putting up leaf by leaf. His whirring feathers fill my ears; His wolf-hound's skull lights up Around my serum; he swings his shield Flashing and streaming down the aisle of beds To cut his sight from mine, but I rise From cotton, aluminum, rubber, gauze, tin, And creep out on a leg like a double exposure's: Out, as the wind dives still, And the light from the high sword falls To the roads through my leg In dim and complex joy.

My foot breaks New, as with throat-heat, down smashing the records Shed, slamming into tents, over bunkers. He dances like dust, low in the chalk fields As I sprint the beach past landing-craft, Fuel drums, crates, revetments, stars Waiting in delicate rain to fix my form at night To the north. In gold flats of sun, he hangs, Not sure, because of the speed that takes my head Lashing from side to side on guano'd rocks. My eyes close in unforgiving pity On his dwindling shield.

I sleep And wake. My loins draw in: I relax And stream all day and night As rocks, sea, sun, above the landing beach. A truck blasts through with a load of coral. About that spirit burning emptily Darkness lowers the coals into the nut grove, Where we blew on the soil, and licked with flame, Mud, from the fortified tombs. Looped with cartridges, With foresters' gear, dug in, I sprawled In the enfilade: the urn-shaped gun-pits rocketed Through my sights, and the island sang Glory for glory into my shadow, For the field lay clear to the sea, And the aircraft rose.

I woke and knelt Over the ward, then crept, knee, fist, and stump, Into a crab-grassed, brambled gulley Where was a cow. Its eyes rolled And fell back. For a while I lay with my side Touching in and out of the earth, Until the dark boys formed in ranks around, And from above, as at a sign, all raised to their lips Thistle, and blew a long soft mirror-clouding breath In which something shook to come back, Or to go on, but could not, in the huge light snow Like a face advancing to its counterparts: The mouth toward hunger to be made serene, The eyes to enchanted marble, the ears, the sea, All through my eyeholes floating still.

In my horns I held the short-haired Or crab-back-thorned sun, far off, Listening. Round metal cleared. My grinning serpents flew at his feathered heels, Beat down, and Spring tore off their skins. He placed his armor on the stair of light And bent to take my yellowed head, His muscles gliding naked in the mirror Of the air, his face warm as a man's Who shall hold at his breast the look To freeze his peaceful cities to the stone Lamp of every room, though over plotted graves He bear it in trembling gentleness, till it be richened With the stars between the ships of all the bays, And nail it to the ground in secret weeping.

The Courtship Though lumber was scarce, we found it, Trading with rations of whiskey, And began to build on the clifftop Not a tent with a floor, but a house Above the ragged island which had changed To peace one night while we slept: A three-room house with a view, A porch, two rugs, and a kitchen. All ends in gentleness. It was not a place to bring girls We would marry, but we liked To think of bringing others: Perhaps those, in the flesh, Cut out of polished magazines And smiling like a harem from our walls.

Each fluttered on her four nails As we cut windows near her in the wind. The live slats under our camp chairs Rocked, as we drank tea, becalmed, Our missions done, seeing the earth No longer from aircraft, but a porch We had built for idling upon. In shorts and unmartial attire We kept the high house for officers And gentlemen, and dozed for weeks. Yet strange claims settled upon us For this was becoming home. Each thought for the first time of children By an unknown woman he should love Enough to go back to war for, Who kept this house by unlikeness To the slick girls who trembled and chattered All day and night on our walls.


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Before we moved out, our girls, Their immortal skin in tatters, Flaked strangely away, still smiling, And while we awaited that day A captain went down the cliff On a rope, each dangerous evening, To bring back blue, foreign flowers For no one, to place on the table. Perception with him is not a static matter.

It is characteristically, whatever his subject, a clash, a confrontation, something that might happen in a cyclotron; and the particles that are struck off are new and packed with primal energy, particles of order destroyed during the act of creation. What I am left with is an awed sense of the pure power of these words".

The eagle's mile

See All Customer Reviews. Shop Books. Read an excerpt of this book! Add to Wishlist. USD Overview For over three decades, James Dickey has been one of the nation's most important poets and a prominent man of letters. Continues… Excerpted from "The Whole Motion" by. Excerpted by permission of Wesleyan University Press. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

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