for Nicole Doise

The way to this is. Not easy to find when you know
how it ends, the clutter of was. Hard enough
finding one's own face in the brass
plaque of the New York Trust pulsing with taxis
at the end of a brazen century. How much harder
to follow, in a yellowed book, Englished
from an uncongenial tongue, the thread
of an argument even the Old World has lost
interest in arguing—follow it back
through a disused labyrinth till you see
nothing in the dark save the line,
only the line before you, silver blue as a vein
of electricity held lightly between thumb and forefinger.