8:58 am


an excerpt from my journal, dated february 2nd, 2009

8:58 am

“a police officer in training stands in a hallway at attention, facing a cork board papered with fliers. His hands are hanging down, and they gently clasp his hat as his eyes dance across the bulletin board. His eyes stop at at a flier which advertises a study abroad program. At this moment any number of things may be going through the man’s head. To me he resembles a lonely child looking at some display window on 5th avenue, advertising christmas presents he knows will never come. Is he wondering what his life might be like if he had made different decisions? does he wish he was making art or adventuring in costa rica? was it always his wish to be an officer of the law? I wonder if he has ever felt the white light of apollos archaic torso?”

related poem:

The Archaic Torso of Apollo

by Rainer Maria Rilke
Translated by Stephen Mitchell

We cannot know his legendary head
with eyes like ripening fruit. And yet his torso
is still suffused with brilliance from inside,
like a lamp, in which his gaze, now turned to low,

gleams in all its power. Otherwise
the curved breast could not dazzle you so, nor could
a smile run through the placid hips and thighs
to that dark center where procreation flared.

Otherwise this stone would seem defaced
beneath the translucent cascade of the shoulders
and would not glisten like a wild beast’s fur:

would not, from all the borders of itself,
burst like a star: for here there is no place
that does not see you. You must change your life.



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