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Even Ornaments of Speech Are Forms of Deceit

“Even Ornaments of Speech Are Forms of Deceit.” Poem

History of the Royal Society
It’s 1667. Reason is everywhere, saving
for the future, ordering a small glass of wine.
Cause, arm in arm with Effect, strolls by
in sturdy shoes.
Of course, there are those who venture
out under cover of darkness to buy a bag
of metaphors or even some personification
from Italy, primo and uncut.
But for the most part, poets like Roderigo
stroll the boulevards in their normal hats.
When he thinks of his beloved, he opens
his notebook with a flourish.
“Your lips,” he writes, “are like
lips.”

Ron Koertge
from Geography of the Forehead

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