1To be told in print at age sixty-three
2that you're not a poet
3because what you write aren't poems,
4isn't the help it might have been
5at, say, twenty-three.
6Then perhaps you might have shaken the habit,
7tried booze or more sex to compensate,
8come out fairly unshaken.
9Now, unfortunately, it's much too late,
10for better or for worse you're hooked,
12hanging on any way you can:
13not the most graceful way to go,
14but even to be allowed to touch those great white flanks
15is a privilege and pleasure,
16which the little man with the quivering pen
17could never, never comprehend.
11] Pegasus, "the thundering horse of Jove" (lightning-bearer for Zeus), whose kick caused the spring of Hippocrene, the well of poetic inspiration, to start flowing. Back to Line