Poetry Selections

John Berryman (1914–1972)

11 Addresses to the Lord (7)

After a Stoic, a Peripatetic, a Pythagorean,
Justin Martyr studied the words of the Saviour,
finding them short, precise, terrible, & full of refreshment.
I am tickled to learn this.

Let one day desolate Sherry, fair, thin, tall,
at 29 today her life the Sahara Desert,
who never has once enjoyed a significant relation,
so find His lightning words.

From John Berryman; Collected Poems 1937–1971, edited and introduced by Charles Thornbury (New York: Farrar, Straus, Giroux).