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August 3rd, 2015 - we have 234 poets, 8,025 poems and 294,109 comments.
Randall Jarrell - 90 North

At home, in my flannel gown, like a bear to its floe,
I clambered to bed; up the globe's impossible sides
I sailed all night—till at last, with my black beard,
My furs and my dogs, I stood at the northern pole.

There in the childish night my companions lay frozen,
The stiff fur knocked at my starveling throat,
And I gave my great sigh: the flakes came huddling,
Were they really my end? In the darkness I turned to my rest.

—Here, the flag snaps in the glare and silence
Of the unbroken ice. I stand here,
The dogs bark, my beard is black, and I stare
At the North Pole . . .
                                  And now what? Why, go back.

Turn as I please, my step is to the south.
The world—my world spins on this final point
Of cold and wretchedness: all lines, all winds
End in this whirlpool I at last discover.

And it is meaningless. In the child's bed
After the night's voyage, in that warm world
Where people work and suffer for the end
That crowns the pain—in that Cloud-Cuckoo-Land

I reached my North and it had meaning.
Here the actual pole of my existence,
Where all that I have done is meaningless,
Where I die or live by accident alone—

Where, living or dying, I am still alone;
Here where North, the night, the berg of death
Crowd me out of the ignorant darkness,
I see at last that all the knowledge

I wrung from the darkness—that the darkness flung me—
Is worthless as ignorance: nothing comes from nothing,
The darkness from the darkness. Pain comes from the darkness
And we call it wisdom. It is pain.

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Added: Feb 21 2003 | Viewed: 245 times | Comments and analysis of 90 North by Randall Jarrell Comments (437)

90 North - Comments and Information

Poet: Randall Jarrell
Poem: 90 North

Comment 437 of 437, added on July 1st, 2015 at 10:54 AM.
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L9RYgs I cannot thank you enough for the article post.Really thank you! Fantastic.

seo service from Micronesia
Comment 436 of 437, added on June 30th, 2015 at 7:40 PM.
wFvrfTujiWnuOZeoPAT

W6QuEu I cannot thank you enough for the article post. Really Great.

seo service from Lebanon
Comment 435 of 437, added on April 7th, 2015 at 8:12 AM.
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ehmBw1 I carry on listening to the news speak about receiving free online grant applications so I have been looking around for the best site to get one. Could you tell me please, where could i get some?

crorkz from Egypt

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