Epigram #16

The dry soul rages. The unfeeling feel
With the dry vehemence of the unreal.
So I, in the idea of your arms, unwon,
Am as the real in unreal undone.

Robert Pinsky reads and discusses Epigram #16

...the meaning is packed, yet clear, the sounds (I particularly admire the way "idea" echoes "I" in the third line) are rich but do not swamp the meaning; the movement of pauses between units of different length varies against the pentameter line in a way that adds grace to the sounds.

J. V. Cunningham at Academy of American Poets

Tad Richards on Cunningham

Interestingly, the line of demarcation between the literary and the light is so stringent in American poetry that Cunningham's work does not appear alongside these figures in anthologies of light verse, though his work is as witty and accessible as theirs, as in the poem about the reader who "Dislikes my book, calls it to my discredit/A book you can't put down before you've read it."