To See It Is to Know That Mendelssohn Would Never Do

Marianne Moore

The Times, commenting on Norman Wilkinson’s settings in the Granville Barker production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Newspaper comment, that stiff-jawed,
    Black-bodied puppet show, here
         Stands erect, upon the wings of verity:
         It will not clatter, flouted, to the earth.
Its gestures print conviction on
     My mind. The want of clothes here
         Makes the man. The scantness of the melody
         Smooths creases straight and seals the fellow’s worth.

Marianne Moore was an American poet and essayist who received the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, and the National Medal for Literature.
Originally published:
October 1, 2003


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