The Lunatic Cure

The recommended cure is water
reflecting full moonshine
drunk from a silver bowl turned
on like a surgeon’s headlamp
to be swilled by the afflicted one
between his sobs and howls.
In the swilling it’s all mixed back
together – the life that he supposes
to go on, and in which he should
be taking part – of circus girls
and stallions and thrown roses –
together with this, the bright side
where he’s crumbling like plaster
exposed on the bed-ledge
looking out at the garden and the trees
stand each alone in the moon-light and
the rabbits are set out on the grass like
plastic cups at an asylum picnic.