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Carl Sandburg - An Electric Sign Goes Dark

POLAND, France, Judea ran in her veins,
Singing to Paris for bread, singing to Gotham in a fizz at the pop of a bottle’s cork.
  
“Won’t you come and play wiz me” she sang … and “I just can’t make my eyes behave.”
“Higgeldy-Piggeldy,” “Papa’s Wife,” “Follow Me” were plays.
  
Did she wash her feet in a tub of milk? Was a strand of pearls sneaked from her trunk? The newspapers asked.
Cigarettes, tulips, pacing horses, took her name.
  
Twenty years old … thirty … forty …
Forty-five and the doctors fathom nothing, the doctors quarrel, the doctors use silver tubes feeding twenty-four quarts of
blood into the veins, the respects of a prize-fighter, a cab driver.
And a little mouth moans: It is easy to die when they are dying so many grand deaths in France.
  
A voice, a shape, gone.
A baby bundle from Warsaw … legs, torso, head … on a hotel bed at The Savoy.
The white chiselings of flesh that flung themselves in somersaults, straddles, for packed houses:
A memory, a stage and footlights out, an electric sign on Broadway dark.
  
She belonged to somebody, nobody.
No one man owned her, no ten nor a thousand.
She belonged to many thousand men, lovers of the white chiseling of arms and shoulders, the ivory of a laugh, the bells of
song.
  
Railroad brakemen taking trains across Nebraska prairies, lumbermen jaunting in pine and tamarack of the Northwest, stock
ranchers in the middle west, mayors of southern cities
Say to their pals and wives now: I see by the papers Anna Held is dead.

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Added: Feb 4 2004 | Viewed: 3761 times | Comments and analysis of An Electric Sign Goes Dark by Carl Sandburg Comments (2)

An Electric Sign Goes Dark - Comments and Information

Poet: Carl Sandburg
Poem: 10. An Electric Sign Goes Dark
Volume: Smoke and Steel
- VIII. Circles of Doors
Year: Published/Written in 1922
Poem of the Day: Feb 24 2007

Comment 2 of 2, added .
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Comment 1 of 2, added on March 2nd, 2013 at 6:09 PM.
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Oh yes, good ole lunch meat. Remember potted meat in a can? I sospupe they still make it.I wanted saw your comment on my blog about the citron melon seeds. The day before I had just pulled up about a hundred new little citron vines coming up everywhere around the farm.I will save some seeds for you, if you like. We have plenty!I am interested in the citron melon marmalade. I want to try making it this summer.Have a great day.Pam

Mohamad from Panama

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