Hi Joe, hi Ann,
I'm glad you both enjoyed the closing line here.
Joe: thanks for calling the poem well made. I churn out a lot of poetry (one a day for some years), and the deal breaker for me is whether the thing seems to have organic unity. Large reject pile, of course. I agree, I'm often visible in the work, thinking out loud. I don't mind ideas in poetry, they show up often in my own, for better or worse. I think that's my voice. Your second paragraph seems to me perfectly on point, Schumpeter and all. Beau Brummell perhaps unexpectedly invented the black and white that businessmen wear to this day, men were more like peacocks before then. Or maybe we still are.
Ann: thank you for the link to that fine, witty poem with its splendid introduction. Reminds me a bit of Carlyle. I'd find the poem undamaged without its refrain, which seems to me better suited to the C19th than the C21st. O tempora, o mores, as they say. But anyway, it seems extremely relevant, not least because I was looking at my kouros on a page as I wrote, surrounded by americana. Perhaps inside my essay is a poem struggling to get out. I can't yet answer that, but I do feel there is an organic unity to what I've generated, and a coherent voice. Does it do justice to the kouros? Less so than Butler did to his Montreal cabinet of curiosities, I guess. Thanks for showing me he wrote poetry!
TS Eliot once wrote, "Mr. Chesterton's brain swarms with ideas. I see no evidence that it thinks." I only hope not to have succumbed to that fate.
Thank you both,