In a Station of the Metro (first published in 1913) is a poem by Ezra Pound, and one of his best-known works. It is only 2 lines long:

The apparition of these faces in the crowd:
Petals on a wet, black bough.

Pound explained that the poem was a result of his getting off a train at a metro station, when he "saw suddenly a beautiful face, and then another and another, and then a beautiful child's face, and then another beautiful woman". His poem appears to be an Imagist attempt to convey the emotion this caused.

Alternate versions were written by Pound that alter the grammatical relationships between the images in the poem - the poem is sometimes given with a semi-colon instead of a colon, or with neither. In one version a comma appeared after "Petals". In addition, the earliest published version had additional spacing to change the emphasis:

The apparition     of these faces     in the crowd
Petals     on a wet, black     bough.


  • Ezra Pound, Vorticism, in The Fortnightly Review, Sept. 1, 1914

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