Poets Walk: "I want a rare sky"

Poets Walk: "I want a rare sky"

Location on Poets Walk Map: 93


The Lie by Anne Waldman


Art begins with a lie

    The separation is you plus me plus what we make

        Look into lightbulb, blink, sun’s in your eye

I want a rare sky

    vantage point free from misconception

        Art begins with a lie

Nothing to lose, spontaneous rise

    of reflection, paint the picture

        of a lightbulb, or eye the sun

How to fuel the world, then die

    Distance yourself from artfulness

        How? Art begins with a lie

The audience wants to cry

    when the actors are real & passionate

        Look into footlight, then feed back to eye

You fluctuate in an artful body

    You try to imitate the world’s glory

        Art begins with a lie

            That’s the story, sharp speck in the eye.


"The Lie" is from Helping the Dreamer: Selected Poems, 1966-1988. Copyright © 1989 by Anne Waldman. Used by permission of Coffee House Press, www.coffeehousepress.org.