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Friday, July 27, 2012

Colors by Stephen Vincent Benet

(For D. M. C.) 

The little man with the vague beard and guise 
Pulled at the wicket. "Come inside!" he said, 
"I'll show you all we've got now -- it was size 
You wanted? -- oh, dry colors! Well" -- he led 
To a dim alley lined with musty bins, 
And pulled one fiercely. Violent and bold 
A sudden tempest of mad, shrieking sins 
Scarlet screamed out above the battered gold 
Of tins and picture-frames. I held my breath. 
He tugged another hard -- and sapphire skies 
Spread in vast quietude, serene as death, 
O'er waves like crackled turquoise -- and my eyes 
Burnt with the blinding brilliance of calm sea! 
"We're selling that lot there out cheap!" said he.

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