Sometimes a poem can create unintended images for a reader, decades after it is written. When William Carlos Williams died, Laurence Tureaud was only 11 years old. I’m not sure it is possible to read the following poem, though, without Mr. Tureaud appearing in my mind.
Mr T. bareheaded in a soiled undershirt his hair standing out on all sides stood on his toes heels together arms gracefully for the moment curled above his head. Then he whirled about bounded into the air and with an entrechat perfectly achieved completed the figure. My mother taken by surprise where she sat in her invalid's chair was left speechless. Bravo! she cried at last and clapped her hands. The man's wife came from the kitchen: What goes on here? she said. But the show was over.