from The Thousand and Second Night

By James Merrill

                    Yes, what now? Ah. How and when
Did he “affirm”? Why, constantly. And how else
But in the form. Form’s what affirms. That’s well
Said, if I do—[Bells ring.] Go, gentlemen.


The Thousand and Second Night, Section 4. James Merrill’s poem is copyright © the Literary Estate of James Merrill at Washington University in St. Louis and appears by permission of Washington University and Stephen Yenser.m