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The Second Coming

Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi 
Troubles my sight: somewhere in the sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.

The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

— W.B. Yeats

Untitled from The Strangest Fruit - Vincent Valdez (2013)

Untitled - Kaitlin Merchant (2016)

Y por las noches gemia [And by night it moaned] - Manuel Alvarez Bravo (1945)

Black Sienna - Franz Kline (1960)

Melancholia - Directed by Lars Von Trier (2011)

Introduction to poetry

I ask them to take a poem
and hold it up to the light
like a color slide

or press an ear against its hive. 

I say drop a mouse into a poem
and watch him probe his way out, 

or walk inside the poem’s room
and feel the walls for a light switch. 

I want them to waterski
across the surface of a poem
waving at the author’s name on the shore. 

But all they want to do
is tie the poem to a chair with rope
and torture a confession out of it. 

They begin beating it with a hose
to find out what it really means.

- Billy Collins