The building of the skyscraper
The steel worker on the girder
learned not to look down, and does his work
And there are words we have learned
Not to look at,
Not to look for substance
Below them. But we are on the verge
There are words that mean nothing
But there is something to mean.
Not a declaration which is truth
But a thing
Which is. It is the business of the poet
To suffer the things of the world
And to speak them and himself out:
Oh, the tree, growing from the sidewalk
It has a little life, sprouting
Little green buds
Into the culture of the streets.
We look back
Three hundred years and see bare land.
And suffer vertigo.
“Anyone whose goal is ‘something higher’ must expect someday to suffer vertigo. What is vertigo? Fear of falling? No, Vertigo is something other than fear of falling. It is the voice of the emptiness below us which tempts us and lures us, it is the desire to fall, against which terrified, we defend ourselves.”
They who contemplate the depths of the soul, may be seized with vertigo.