*Beginning of /Ulysses/ by James Joyce |Versification|


plump Buck Mulligan came from the stairs,
bearing a bowl of lather;
a mirror and a razor lay crossed.
A yellow dressinggown, halfdoffed
gently behind him: the mild morning air.
The bowl aloft, he intoned:
Introibo ad altare Dei.
Coarsely he called up | down the dark winding stones :
— Come up, Kinch ! You fearful Jesuit, come pray.

Solemnly forward, mounting the gunrest round,
he blessed gravely thrice:
the tower, surrounding country, awaking mounts.
Catching sight of Stephen Dedalus;
bent, he made rapid crosses in the air,
gurgling his throat, shaking his reason.
Dedalus, displeased and sleepy, leaned
arms on the top of the staircase, looked
coldly; the shaking gurgling face, blessing —
equine length, untonsured hair:
pale oak.

Mulligan peeped under the mirror, a stroke;
covered the bowl smartly.
— Back to barracks ! sternly.
— For this, O dearly beloved; the genuine
Christine: body and soul and blood and ouns.
Slow music, please. Shut your eyes, gents.
One moment.
A little trouble about those corpuscles ashen.

Silence, all.


*[Paraphrased from:  “Ulysses” — James Joyce]

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