‘As I argued in my previous book,
‘Some definitions of ‘definition’ in contemporary philosophy’ –
an argument which I hope to pursue
in a following volume, (and I quote) :
‘to define what we mean by ‘definition’
we must first consider
the nature of definition:
can it be itself defined? Is
its definition itself a retreat
from what definition defines? …’
and the wood of academic chairs
creaking as a lecture ends,
from which once the young sap rose
like the hope of definition
dries, decays and dessicates.

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