Another Example

by John Ashbery

Of our example, earth,
we know the star-shaped universe:
                                             of July streets.
Is it a bucket you sit in
                                            or on?
How they led us past the fence.
The one horse was mortified.

But it’s unhealthy, you say
we must have another example,
just one.

What’s wanted is faces in windows
screams that went away a long time ago.
What says to recall them?

To be revived like paper ants
and then endure the long vacuum of pre-eternity
and still be allowed to buy something
on the station platform?

The train is turning away—
There are no familiar quotations.

Here, put some on a plate, he said. That’s the way.