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|Reviewed by Richard Bowers
|Unpardon me but I relent it boldly;
For it is far ahead, if I can be sure of it,
And far it is, that my hallucination be valid,
And hallucination it is, as it should be,
And however, unlike itself, mysterious, unknown, and untested,
So it be foreseen in my tireless search.
|Reviewed by Phillip Ellis
|I am always pleased to see Michael's work, and I have had the pleasure of accepting some for publication in the past. I like the particular poem given here, as it resonates both with my knowledge of his life, and in a wider context, as well. The eagle is both a specifically American symbol, and a much wider, European one -- we should not forget the importance of the eagle in Continental heraldry, for example.
At the same time there are more general readings, arising ultimately out of medieval bestiaries. The eagle is a prideful bird, but Michael's eagle is not one of overweening pride. It is the pride of the self-standing person, the person who can fly on its ways and paths alone and without shedding any hint of their passage to us unable to follow.
It may be that I read too much into the poem, but, as the poem's meaning is formed from the reading process, after all, it is one reading that is both informed by Michael's situation, and by a wider understanding of the eagle in Occidental symbolism.