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John Berryman - Dream Song 265: I don't know one damned butterfly from another

I don't know one damned butterfly from another
my ignorance of the stars is formidable,
also of dogs & ferns
except that around my house one destroys the other
When I reckon up my real ignorance, pal,
I mumble "many returns"—

next time it will be nature & Thoreau
this time is Baudelaire if one had the skill
and even those problems O
At the mysterious urging of the body or Poe
reeled I with chance, insubordinate & a killer
O formal & elaborate I choose you

but I love too the spare, the hit-or-miss,
the mad, I sometimes can't    always tell them apart
As we fall apart, will you let me hear?
That would be good, that would be halfway to bliss
You said will you answer back? I cross my heart
& hope to die but not this year.

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Added: Feb 20 2003 | Viewed: 98 times | Comments and analysis of Dream Song 265: I don't know one damned butterfly from another by John Berryman Comments (4)

Dream Song 265: I don't know one damned butterfly from another - Comments and Information

Poet: John Berryman
Poem: 265. Dream Song 265: I don't know one damned butterfly from another
Volume: His Toy, His Dream, His Rest
Year: Published/Written in 1968
Poem of the Day: Nov 11 2005

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