Treasure Island

Richard Wilbur

(March 1, 1921)

Juggler


A ball will bounce; but less and less. It's not
A light-hearted thing, resents its own resilience.
Falling is what it loves, and the earth falls
So in our hearts from brilliance,
Settles and is forgot.
It takes a sky-blue juggler with five red balls

To shake our gravity up. Whee, in the air
The balls roll around, wheel on his wheeling hands,
Learning the ways of lightness, alter to spheres
Grazing his finger ends,
Cling to their courses there,
Swinging a small heaven about his ears.

But a heaven is easier made of nothing at all
Than the earth regained, and still and sole within
The spin of worlds, with a gesture sure and noble
He reels that heaven in,
Landing it ball by ball,
And trades it all for a broom, a plate, a table.

Oh, on his toe the table is turning, the broom's
Balancing up on his nose, and the plate whirls
On the tip of the broom! Damn, what a show, we cry:
The boys stamp, and the girls
Shriek, and the drum booms
And all come down, and he bows and says good-bye.

If the juggler is tired now, if the broom stands
In the dust again, if the table starts to drop
Through the daily dark again, and though the plate
Lies flat on the table top,
For him we batter our hands
Who has won for once over the world's weight.

Submitted: Thursday, July 03, 2003
Edited: Sunday, July 09, 2006

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
1 person did not like.

What do you think this poem is about?



Read poems about / on: heaven, red, sky, light, girl

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (Juggler by Richard Wilbur )

Enter the verification code :

  • Max Reif (7/19/2005 9:11:00 PM)

    I love this poem!
    Read it in an anthology on an airplane trip, a year or so ago. (Report) Reply

Read all 1 comments »

PoemHunter.com Updates

New Poems

  1. Angst, Jole Hans
  2. I Will..., ging taping
  3. Another Reaser Christmas!, Sharilynn Dawn Reaser
  4. A dogs life, michael hagwood
  5. MIKE WASN'T HAPPY, shannon strauss
  6. Unique We Are, Mantu Mahakul
  7. Shadow, Liffy Liu
  8. Broken angel, Barbara Dixion
  9. far, Meral Meri
  10. Sen Seç, Meral Meri

Poem of the Day

poet James Whitcomb Riley

When the frost is on the punkin and the fodder's in the shock
And you hear the kyouck and gobble of the struttin' turkey cock
And the clackin' of the guineys, and the cluckin' of the hens
...... Read complete »

 

Modern Poem

poet Claude McKay

 
[Hata Bildir]