Here you will find the Long Poem Ann Arbor Variations of poet Frank O'Hara
1 Wet heat drifts through the afternoon like a campus dog, a fraternity ghost waiting to stay home from football games. The arches are empty clear to the sky. Except for the leaves: those lashes of our thinking and dreaming and drinking sight. The spherical radiance, the Old English look, the sum of our being, "hath perced to the roote" all our springs and falls and now rolls over our limpness, a daily dragon. We lose our health in a love of color, drown in a fountain of myriads, as simply as children. It is too hot, our birth was given up to screaming. Our life on these street lawns seems silent. The leaves chatter their comparisons to the wind and the sky fills up before we are out of bed. O infinite our siestas! adobe effigies in a land that is sick of us and our tanned flesh. The wind blows towards us particularly the sobbing of our dear friends on both coasts. We are sick of living and afraid that death will not be by water, o sea. 2 Along the walks and shaded ways pregnant women look snidely at children. Two weeks ago they were told, in these selfsame pools of trefoil, "the market for emeralds is collapsing," "chlorophyll shines in your eyes," "the sea's misery is progenitor of the dark moss which hides on the north side of trees and cries." What do they think of slim kids now? and how, when the summer's gong of day and night slithers towards their sweat and towards the nest of their arms and thighs, do they feel about children whose hides are pearly with days of swimming? Do they mistake these fresh drops for tears? The wind works over these women constantly! trying, perhaps, to curdle their milk or make their spring unseasonably fearful, season they face with dread and bright eyes, The leaves, wrinkled or shiny like apples, wave women courage and sigh, a void temperature. 3 The alternatives of summer do not remove us from this place. The fainting into skies from a diving board, the express train to Detroit's damp bars, the excess of affection on the couch near an open window or a Bauhaus fire escape, the lazy regions of stars, all are strangers. Like Mayakovsky read on steps of cool marble, or Yeats danced in a theatre of polite music. The classroon day of dozing and grammar, the partial eclipse of the head in the row in front of the head of poplars, sweet Syrinx! last out the summer in a stay of iron. Workmen loiter before urinals, stare out windows at girders tightly strapped to clouds. And in the morning we whimper as we cook an egg, so far from fluttering sands and azure! 4 The violent No! of the sun burns the forehead of hills. Sand fleas arrive from Salt Lake and most of the theatres close. The leaves roll into cigars, or it seems our eyes stick together in sleep. O forest, o brook of spice, o cool gaze of strangers! the city tumbles towards autumn in a convulsion of tourists and teachers. We dance in the dark, forget the anger of what we blame on the day. Children toss and murmur as a rumba blankets their trees and beckons their stars closer, older, now. We move o'er the world, being so much here. It's as if Poseidon left off counting his waters for a moment! In the fields the silence is music like the moon. The bullfrogs sleep in their hairy caves. across the avenue a trefoil lamp of the streets tosses luckily. The leaves, finally, love us! and moonrise! we die upon the sun.