Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Stephen McNally/Added to "Your Childish Painting"

I might have mentioned the poet remembered in "Your Childish Painting." He was Stephen McNally, author of the book of poems Child in Amber. He was teaching at Southern Methodist University when he passed away, and working on a new collection then, but I don't know if his friends managed to finish it.

In my draft of "Your Childish Painting" I found a quatrain written beneath it. Evidently I thought the poem ended too abruptly and needed more. But since it is so triumphalist, switches from Homer to Dante and spoils something that should be left alone, it stays by itself. But it is kind of nice by itself, an echo of my favorite lines, the last ones, of Paradiso.

where souls released from the torture
of their making sing plainsong to
the unfolding celestial rose, bright
origin of the sun and other stars. 

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