I

If nature is life, nature is death:
It is winter as it is spring:
Confusion is variety, variety
And confusion in everything
Make experience the true conclusion
Of all desire and opulence,
All satisfaction and poverty.

II

When a hundred years had passed nature seemed to man
a clock
Another century sank away and nature seemed a jungle
in a rock
And now that nature has become a ticking and hidden
bomb how we must mock
Newton, Democritus, the Deity
The heart’s ingenuity and the mind’s infinite
uncontrollable
insatiable curiosity.

III

Purple black cloud at sunset: it is late August
and the light begins to look cold, and as we look,
listen and look, we hear the first drums of autumn.

Analysis, meaning and summary of Delmore Schwartz's poem Phoenix Lyrics

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