For Terence Corcoron

An old man
(certainly wiser than the poet)
asks the poet,
“Where’s your evidence?”

A hypothesis of partisans
rut round them,
ready to run.

The poet
keeps reading
(what it was he’d been reading)
and concedes he’s been wrong.

“The shape’s changed,
and what’s now X
can’t be made O
so let me just say
what I meant to say.”

The old man
(realizing the poet of poets
in his mind’s eye) notices
the poet grows very little.