J. Allyn Rosser‘s poem, “A Dream of Ezra Pound,” was published in NER 13.2 (1990).
I’d eaten dark chocolate, reading late at night.
They introduced me, and I still hadn’t read
All the Cantos. Somehow he knew this on sight.
Still, his large old hand shook mine; I stayed
With him to kiss that wistful dented cheek;
He was shyly pleased, beard glowing, and said:
(I couldn’t hear. His voice was oddly weak,
As if it came from behind him.) Police
Were there. He’d come back down, or up, to speak
On God. So he was not completely at ease
When my colleagues nattered on and on
About their flatly mispronounced bêtises;
But he was polite- extremely- to everyone!
Had he learned the hard way from his long bed
In Saint Elizabeths, lying there alone,
To nod when it was best to nod? He did.
It went over well with the academicians,
Beamish boys. At last he shook his head-
His voice resumed the vibrant, hallowing insistence
I’d expected, though much softer, bereaved,
In earnest response to some jargonous nonsense:
“Yes yes, we think in order to know, or perceive-
And in this we are sometimes, it seems, successful-
But we believe in order to believe“
He said this in worn sorrow, in sorrow distressful.
He said this, E.P. No madness up his sleeve.
“No god,” he said. “Nothing but what we may leave.”