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The Unbeliever - Poem by Elizabeth Bishop (Elizabeth Bishop)

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He sleeps on the top of a mast. - Bunyan He sleeps on the top of a mast with his eyes fast closed. The sails fall away below him like the sheets of his bed, leaving out in the air of the night the sleeper's head. Asleep he was transported there, asleep he curled in a gilded ball on the mast's top, or climbed inside a gilded bird, or blindly seated himself astride. "I am founded on marble pillars," said a cloud. "I never move. See the pillars there in the sea?" Secure in introspection he peers at the watery pillars of his reflection. A gull had wings under his and remarked that the air was "like marble." He said: "Up here I tower through the sky for the marble wings on my tower-top fly." But he sleeps on the top of his mast with his eyes closed tight. The gull inquired into his dream, which was, "I must not fall. The spangled sea below wants me to fall. It is hard as diamonds; it wants to destroy us all." Elizabeth Bishop

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