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gee i like to think of dead it means nearer because deeper
firmer since darker than little round water at one end of
the well       it's too cool to be crooked and it's too firm
to be hard but it's sharp and it's thick and it loves,       every
old thing falls in rosebugs and jackknives and kittens and
pennies they all sit there looking at each other having the
fastest time because they've never met before

dead's more even than how many ways of sitting on
your head your unnatural hair has in the morning

dead's clever too like POF goes the alarm off and the
little striker having the best time tickling away every-
body's brain so everybody just puts out their finger
and they stuff the poor thing all full of fingers

dead has a smile like the nicest man you've never met
who maybe winks at you in a streetcar and you pretend
you don't but really you do see and you are My how
glad he winked and hope he'll do it again

or if it talks about you somewhere behind your back it
makes your neck feel all pleasant and stoopid       and if
dead says may i have this one and was never intro-
duced you say Yes because you know you want it to
dance with you and it wants to and it can dance and
Whocares

dead's fine like hands do you see that water flowerpots
in windows but they live higher in their house than
you so that's all you see but you don't want to

dead's happy like the way underclothes All so differ-
ently solemn and inti and sitting on one string

dead never says my dear,Time for your musiclesson
and you like music and to have somebody play who
can but you know you never can and why have to?

dead's nice like a dance where you danced simple hours
and you take all your prickley-clothes off and squeeze-
into-largeness without one word       and you lie still as
anything       in largeness and this largeness begins to
give you,the dance all over again and you,feel all again
all over the way men you liked made you feel when they
touched you(but that's not all)because largeness tells
you so you can feel what you made,men feel when,you
touched,them

dead's sorry like a thistlefluff-thing which goes land-
ing away all by himself on somebody's roof or some-
thing where who-ever-heard-of-growing and nobody
expects you to anyway

dead says come with me he says(and why ever not)into
the round well and see the kitten and the penny and
the jackknife and the rosebug
                                                      and you say Sure you
say (like that) sure i'll come with you you say for i
like kittens i do and jackknives i do and pennies i do
and rosebugs i do

ee cummings
hints for reading cummings



gee i like to think of dead