John Logan was born in Red Oak, Iowa, in 1923 and was educated at Coe College, the University of Iowa and Georgetown University. He has taught at the University of Notre Dame, San Francisco State College, as well as at the Universities of Hawaii and Washington. Since 1966 he has been Professor of English at the State University of New York at Buffalo. His other books of poetry include: Cycle for Mother Cabrini, Ghosts of The Heart, Spring of The Thief, The ZigZag Walk, The Anonymous Lover and Only The Dreamer Can Change The Dream: Selected Poems. John Logan has been the recipient of the Morton Dauwen Zabel Award from the National Institute of Arts and Letters, as well as of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Rockefeller Foundation and the Guggenheim Foundation. "The Bridge of Change is a marvelous book - profound, rich, with a glittering verbal perfection. This is an essential book." -Galway Kinnell "One closes Logan's books ... thinking, 'Yes, this is what poetry can sometimes do, this is what it can sometimes be.' "-James Dickey
There is a two-headed goat, a four-winged chicken
and a sad lamb with seven legs
whose complicated little life was spent in Hopland,
California. I saw the man with doubled eyes
who seemed to watch in me my doubts about my spirit.
Will it snag upon this aging flesh?
There is a strawberry that grew
out of a carrot plant, a blade
of grass that lanced through a thick rock,
a cornstalk nineteen-feet-two-inches tall grown by George
Osborne of Silome, Arkansas.
There is something grotesque growing in me I cannot tell.
It has been waxing, burgeoning, for a long time.
It weighs me down like the chains of the man of Lahore
who began collecting links on his naked body
until he crawled around the town carrying the last
thirteen years of his life six-hundred-seventy pounds.
Each link or each lump in me is an offense against love.
I want my own lit candle lamp buried in my skull
like the Lighthouse Man of Chungking,
who could lead the travelers home.
Well, I am still a traveler and I don't know where
I live. If my home is here, inside my breast,
light it up! And I will invite you in as my first guest.
for Tina Logan
After visiting the Believe It or Not Museum
with her in San Francisco
© BOA Editions, Ltd 1983
Publishing Date: 1983
Cover Wear Evident