To the Heart

This poem is in the line of my attempt to exorcise the eccentric demon of anxiety out of my poetry out of fear that in my eagerness I get out of line. Look here. As though we two were circles intersecting like this: 2 overlapping circles labeled 'me' and 'you' with an arrow from the center of the me pointing toward the center of the you but not extending past the circumference of the me the demon is shown by the arrow in my circle from center to circumference pointing into yours but not touching the center. The circumference of each circle stands for one’s boundary of influence and the center of course takes the place of one’s heart or whatever the heart is taken to mean. Mine is taken to you but the demon has taken it and then taken after you drawing me off center detracting from I say the integrity that I fail to shelter there. That’s what I say but I don’t say what I mean, out of my mind. It’s hard for me to describe it, cutting through the surface from the heart, but by paring to essentials I try to reach an accord. The arrow is a sword in me whose hilt is braced against my heart and whose blade puts stress on our union. I don’t mean to pressure you. That’s why I’m trying to calm down and concentrate on the line that my anxiety is without reason. I don’t want this demon that doesn’t balance an anxiety in you for me, nor the artifice of unwarranted anticipation. I feel that you are forced away avoiding its distress which isn’t how I want you. I’d rather my poetry be calm and full of promise, engaging rather than aggressive, and if our needs are mutual let it be sympathetic.

20 July 1975