Testing on Steel and Glass

“If you open the brain
                                  from whence sprang Solomon and Aristotle
and separate the lips
                                 in the fissure of Sylvius
a triangle of cortex
                               will appear.
This is the Island of Reil.”

Well put, anatomist.
                               We are all careful, men of earth
(a blind man can sense a post).

Thus Newton pondered on falling apples
and a Mixtec carved a humanist in jaguar bone.

“How happy I was,”
                            wrote the scientist after a long illness,
“when once again
                         I had something to investigate.”

Carl Rakosi, “Testing on Steel and Glass” from The Collected Poems of Carl Rakosi (Orono: The National Poetry Foundation, 1986). Used with the permission of Marilyn J. Kane.
Source: The Collected Poems of Carl Rakosi (National Poetry Foundation, 1986)
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