All who are clean of hands and speak Greek are invited
to participate. Mystai (initiates) and priestesses gather
in Athens before the sacred procession to Eleusis

Day 1

The day opens up,
a large, sweet narcissus.
By noon, the crowd has grown,
but smaller than last year.
On the edge of the crowd, a senator
gathers his toga
and turns away, making an opposite
pattern of sworls, making
two countries right here in Athens.

The state loves Zeus.
Below the Acropolis, the floor
of Zeus's vast new temple
is being dragged into place
to catch his voice.
When he speaks,
one would think all the sky-gods
had started rattling
together, finally agreeing
on something. People yearn--who
can blame them?--for one
point settled as far off
as the sun. It's one eye
without a socket, no way to turn.
You don't have to think
where it's going.

........ We gather
on the porch of the Erechtheum, glad
for shade--I and the others,
old believers.

Sun up there: down here, plain
narcissus set
in the thick-tongued earth.
Tongue says death, death.

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