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Beneath the writing on the wall
is the writing it was designed

to obscure. The two together
form a third kind


There is no writing   
on the wall’s other side

Perhaps this lack
constitutes a fourth kind


Some of the writing on the wall
will be designed as truth

some as art


It is said to represent a mirror
of everyday life in its time


“Fabius Naso
talks through his asshole
and shits out his mouth”
for example


“Foute les Arabes”
for example


Certain words and images
or parts of images

have been chipped away
These often turn up for sale

at sidewalk stalls
before the walls

of other cities


I too have an image for sale
It’s the image of a poem

and is to be found
on the reverse of this sheet

“Disclosures” by Michael Palmer, from The Lion Bridge, copyright © 1998 by Michael Palmer. Used by permission of New Directions Publishing Corp.
Source: The Lion Bridge (New Directions Publishing Corporation, 1998)
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