In a new house
I live alone.
My mother and father
Both are gone.

They are cancelled by
Electric words
And classed as something
I once heard

From a woods now buried,
From a sky now full.
Where are my parents
And their hard will?

How huge and fiery
These years have grown,
To make them nothing!
All I have known

Since then is God’s—
This conflagration,
The horror of
His dispensation.

Command or comfort
I have not heard,
But see—burned in my tongue,
These must be His electric words.
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This article originally appeared in The New Criterion, Volume 18 Number 10, on page 36
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