19 antepurgatorio, 2015, 30 panel original x-ray printed on archival rag paper, 110 x 259 cm [enlarge image] Antepurgatorio

Like the dead in Jean Genet, they arrive in a place
That is other, spiritual, and we can understand
That they are not the dead, though they be configured
By the superstition of the dying whom we are
But free beings “like” the dead:
It is the place of Art whose Museum itself
Is but the shadow approximately recast of the shadows
The being-together of works indeed reappeared
Having left innumerable times and places
And gathered here around Tiresias
Come from wherever near to one another
Conversing barely articulate through my silence:
What the lovers in Lucretius cannot do
The dead in Homer can: the crossing of desire.

Michel Deguy

Translated from the French by Wilson Baldridge