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                <p>An Electronic transcription from the Modernist Journals Project, made from OCR'd text using taggedpdf2tei.xsl</p>
            <div type="issue"> <!-- Enter txt below this line -->
                <div type="front">
<ab>Edward J. O'Brien


Songs to Joannes


Mina Loy

APRIL, 1917 Vol. 3, No. 6

Published by OTHERS FRANK SHAY, Agent, 17 West 8th Street, New York City E. R. BROWN, Boston Agent, Cornhill Price 15 Cents 12 Issues, $1.50 </ab></div>
                <div type="poetry">
<ab>## ## MINA LOY 3


Spawn of Fantasies

Silting the appraisable

Pig Cupid his rosy snout

Rooting erotic garbage

"Once upon a time"

Pulls a weed white and star-topped

Among wild oats sewn in mucous-membrane

I would an eye in a bengal light

Eternity in a sky-rocket

Constellations in an ocean

Whose rivers run no fresher Than a trickle of saliva

These are suspect places

I must live in my lantern Trimming subliminal flicker Virginal to the bellows Of Experience

Coloured glass


The skin-sack In which a wanton duality Packed

All the completions of my infructuous impulses Something the shape of a man


To the casual vulgarity of the merely observant More of a clock-work mechanism Running down against time To which I am not paced

My finger-tips are numb from fretting your hair A God's door-mat

On the threshold of your mind


We might have coupled

In the bed-ridden monopoly of a moment

Or broken flesh with one another

At the profane communion table

Where wine is spill't on promiscuous lips

We might have given birth to a butterfly With the daily-news Printed in blood on its wings


Once in a mezzanino

The starry ceiling

Vaulted an unimaginable family

Bird-like abortions

With human throats

And Wisdom's eyes

Who wore lamp-shade red dresses

And woolen hair


One bore a baby In a padded porte-enfant Tied with a sarsanet ribbon To her goose's wings

But for the abominable shadows

I would have lived

Among their fearful furniture

To teach them to tell me their secrets

Before I guessed

—Sweeping the brood clean out


Midnight empties the street

Of all but us


I am undecided which way back

To the left a boy

—One wing has been washed in the rain

The other will never be clean any more—

Pulling door-bells to remind

Those that are snug

To the right a haloed ascetic

Threading houses Probes wounds for souls —The poor can't wash in hot water— And I dont know which turning to take Since you got home to yourself—first



I know the Wire-Puller intimately And if it were not for the people On whom you keep one eye You could look straight at me And Time would be set back


My pair of feet Smack the flag-stones

That are something left over from your walking

The wind stuffs the scum of the white street

Into my lungs and my nostrils

Exhilarated birds

Prolonging flight into the night

Never reaching — — — — — — —


I am the jealous store-house of the candle-ends That lit your adolescent learning

Behind God's eyes There might Be other lights



When we lifted Our eye-lids on Love A cosmos Of coloured voices And laughing honey

And spermatazoa

At the core of Nothing

In the milk of the Moon


Shuttle-cock and battle-door

A little pink-love

And feathers are strewn


Dear one at your mercy Our Universe Is only

A colorless onion You dérobe Sheath by sheath

Remaining A disheartening odour About your nervy hands



Voices break on the confines of passion Desire Suspicion Man Woman Solve in the humid carnage

Flesh from flesh

Draws the inseparable delight

Kissing at gasps to catch it

Is it true

That I have set you apart Inviolate in an utter crystallization Of all the jolting of the crowd Taught me willingly to live to share

Or are you

Only the other half

Of an ego's necessity

Scourging pride with compassion

To the shallow sound of dissonance

And boom of escaping breath



Come to me There is something

I have got to tell you and I can't tell

Something taking shape

Something that has a new name

A new dimension

A new use

A new illusion

It is ambient And it is in your eyes Something shiny Something only for you

Something that I must not see

It is in my ears Something very resonant Something that you must not hear

Something only for me

Let us be very jealous Very suspicious Very conservative Very cruel

Or we might make an end of the jostling of aspirations

Disorb inviolate egos

Where two or three are welded together They shall become god

Oh that's right

Keep away from me Please give me a push Don't let me understand you Don't realise me

## 10 MINA LOY

Or we might tumble together



Into the terrific Nirvana Me you — you — me



Everlasting passing apparent imperceptible To you

I bring the nascent virginity of —Myself for the moment

No love or the other thing Only the impact of lighted bodies Knocking sparks off each other In chaos


Seldom Trying for Love Fantasy dealt them out as gods Two or three men looked only human

But you alone

Superhuman apparently

I had to be caught in the weak eddy

Of your drivelling humanity

To love you most

## MINA LOY 11


We might have lived together

In the lights of the Arno

Or gone apple stealing under the sea

Or played

Hide and seek in love and cob-webs And a lullaby on a tin-pan

And talked till there were no more tongues To talk with

And never have known any better


I don't care

Where the legs of the legs of the furniture are walking to

Or what is hidden in the shadows they stride Or what would look at me If the shutters were not shut

Red a warm colour on the battle-field Heavy on my knees as a counterpane Count counter

I counted the fringe of the towel Till two tassels clinging together Let the square room fall away From a round vacuum Dilating with my breath


Out of the severing Of hill from hill

## 12 MINA LOY

The interim

Of star from star

The nascent


Of night


Nothing so conserving As cool cleaving Note of the Q H U Clear carving Breath-giving Pollen smelling Space

White telling Of slaking Drinkable Through fingers Running water Grass haulms Grow to

Leading astray

Of fireflies Aerial quadrille


Off one another

Again conjoining

In recaptured pulses

Of light

## MINA LOY 13

You too

Had something

At that time

Of a green-lit glow-worm

Yet slowly drenched To raylessness In rain


Let Joy go solace-winged

To flutter whom she may concern


I store up nights against you Heavy with shut-flower's nightmares

Stack noons

Curled to the solitaire

Core of the



Green things grow Salads

For the cerebral Forager's revival

## 14 MINA LOY

Upon bossed bellies Of mountains Rolling in the sun And flowered flummery Breaks

To my silly shoes

In ways without you I go

Gracelessly As things go


Laughter in solution

Stars in a stare

Irredeemable pledges

Of pubescent consummations


To the recurrent moon Bleach

To the pure white Wickedness of pain


The procreative truth of Me Petered out In pestilent Tear drops

Little lusts and lucidities And prayerful lies

## MINA LOY 15

Muddled with the heinous acerbity Of your street-corner smile


Licking the Arno

The little rosy

Tongue of Dawn

Interferes with our eyelashes

We twiddle to it Round and round Faster

And turn into machines

Till the sun

Subsides in shining

Melts some of us

Into abysmal pigeon-holes

Passion has bored

In warmth

Some few of us

Grow to the level of cool plains Cutting our foot-hold With steel eyes


Shedding our petty pruderies From slit eyes

## 16 MINA LOY

We sidle up To Nature

— — — that irate pornographist


Nucleus Nothing Inconceivable concept Insentient repose The hands of races Drop off from Immodifiable plastic

The contents

Of our ephemeral conjunction

In aloofness from Much

Flowed to approachment of — — — —


There was a man and a woman In the way

While the Irresolvable Rubbed with our daily deaths Impossible eyes


The steps go up for ever

And they are white

And the first step is the last white


## MINA LOY 17

Coloured conclusions

Smelt to synthetic Whiteness

Of my


And I am burnt quite white In the climacteric Withdrawal of your sun And wills and words all white Suffuse

Illimitable monotone

White where there is nothing to see

But a white towel

Wipes the cymophonous sweat

—Mist rise of living—

From your

Etiolate body

And the white dawn

Of your New Day

Shuts down on me

Unthinkable that white over there — — — Is smoke from your house


Evolution fall foul of Sexual equality Prettily miscalculate Similitude

## 18 MINA LOY

Unnatural selection Breed such sons and daughters As shall jibber at each other Uninterpretable cryptonyms Under the moon

Give them some way of braying brassily

For carressive calling

Or to homophonous hiccoughs

Transpose the laugh

Let them suppose that tears

Are snowdrops or molasses

Or anything

Than human insufficiencies Begging dorsal vertebrae

Let meeting be the turning

To the antipodean

And Form a blurr


Than seduce them

To the one

As simple satisfaction For the other

Let them clash together From their incognitoes In seismic orgasm

## MINA LOY 19

For far further Differentiation Rather than watch Own-self distortion Wince in the alien ego


In some

Prenatal plagiarism Foetal buffoons Caught tricks

From architypal pantomime Stringing emotions Looped aloft

For the blind eyes

That Nature knows us with

And the most of Nature is green

What guaranty For the proto-form We fumble

Our souvenir ethics to

— — — — — — — 


Crucifixion Of a busy-body

## 20 MINA LOY

Longing to interfere so

With the intimacies

Of your insolent isolation


Of an illegal ego's


On your equilibrium Caryatid of an idea

Crucifixion Wracked arms Index extremities In vacuum To the unbroken fall


The moon is cold Joannes

Where the Mediterranean — — — — — 


The prig of passion — — — — 

To your professorial paucity

Proto-plasm was raving mad Evolving us — — — 


Love — — — the preeminent literateur

##  </ab></div>