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The Cloud Lesson

Brian Peters

Clouds are half-conquered. A cloud hardly ever 

strays into the office nowadays. When one does 

it can still be dangerous. The chairman

or office boy (clouds being quite classless) 

will swivel round, dribbling cloud.


But that is exceptional. Generally

clouds can be studied through double glass

safely, or mounted on slides, That way, they contribute 

to model-building. Some foreign planets

have their own 'cloud-cosies'. Certain animals crop cloud.


And when, rarely, a cloud comes mooning

against your window, you may see the white hairnet 

of its blood vessels, or the clenched white brain

(which is often shadowed). At those times apply techniques 

of cloud-dispersal. So far is death like Orpheus.


From Poetry Review Vol 59 No 4 (Winter 1968/9)

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