In the far away

In the far away, something close,
the electrified matter of touch,
how it runs from skin to bone
and sits in your being,
what love there is in human hands.

The cool of the screened porch,
outside inside, bowls in our laps,
peas still warm from the garden
so many to shell, so much light
in that sinking time of day.

The mockingbird’s back–
who shall I be for you
any everything, even not bird,
and who shall you be–
for me? All I am is sound.

 

 

 

Part of the Part

This is the part, alas, in which we meet
our posey rosy end, remembered things
that never were, things undone despite their
doing, broken things that just fell apart,

shiny things that really were quite shady,
thoughts we’d not wanted orbiting our heads
like Saturn’s spinning detritus. Our parts
require our meaning all the stupid things

we’re meant to say, the sorrow sunk beneath
the earnest face, the broken voice we smooth
through all the words that make our world unmade.

This is the part where no one

This is the part where no one stands up or
someone does but can’t think of what to say,
tongueless bell—see, like that: all the words
already used up. We leave, who knows where
we go or where we’ve been when we return.

Who will stand up for us? No one at those
impromptu concerts of the past where the
things we thought we knew approximate just
about anything else–stars, lace, something
that flew out of someone’s breezy red car.

That’s what you get for listing off to the
side, it taking forever to get out
of bed or creep down the block . Nonetheless,
If you were here for an eternity,
you could wear this old slow rock away.

This is the part, isn’t it, where you call
your own bluff and don’t confess to the
particular things you had in mind, the
part where you discover someone’s
silence wasn’t the reserve of deep thought.

The god who strolls in this garden we tend,
has some bad news about the weather plus
a few things we’d forgot we’d done or not.
No use in that was then—it runs down
into the earth for ages, this stacked ruin.

What did anyone feel in any new
place with all the dead underfoot, living
much as we do except for their patience
and obdurate good cheer, except that we
love them as we do not love each other.

Even in this late limning of our hearts,
the abandonment procedures require
amnesia about the part where we were
staking listless roadside trash and our
future—already aflame—barreled past.

 

 

 

The part where hearts get broken

This is the part where hearts get broken
though not all at the same time
or in the same way–there’s still time.
The terror team might come to town
with some slight expanding in their
minds till all that’s left is undoing.
Or perhaps a movie crew, inspiring
awe and hospitality just because
they have the charm of somewhere else.
But I digress. After all, it takes
only one of two to think the other
feels the same–something uneven up
ahead, but any flutter in the
universe will do for explanation.
That won’t last. This is the part in which
all other parts are forgotten, more or
less, in favor of the chemistry of
hope, the feeling someone’s always with you
when they’re not, the embellished fetish
of absence. In that imaginary land
in which time together is too short and
time apart is endless, time collapses–
you jerk awake at an alarming
border, on a bus in someone else’s
screwy dream, those guards, if they don’t
like the looks of you, they’ll shoot.

 

 

The ones in ether

the ones in ether were the freshest ones
the latent fulcrum fortified the lake
the radish drilled until the end was done
the earless boss grew teeth out of her face
we paid her curses off and relished some
the federales chased the smoke away
the stew he made and crawled out from
our saints all nailed inside the naked cage

Thick

eisberg 3 mod ward

Thick is how not doing feels, but
paralysis is a tremor at a gate
that turns into a steep incline or cliff
or vast and empty waste. Whatever
it is, it’s the place before place, it’s
where you belong where belonging
has no meaning. It’s where nothing can be
got, where the illusion of having
runs out, where there’s no Virgil
to explain things you can’t see.
It’s the country of all corners though
where two meet there is no one,
there is no face to face. It’s where
the wall you had to lean against—
the one you slid inside to slide
along the edge– is gone.

Funerary

Somewhere low the traveler in his hat
asks directions, higher up, death on her horse
with her wings and compass, paid mourners
on the upper level in their muu-muus
and brogues, smoke and chat on their break,
real mourners lounge off to the side, drinking,
telling jokes, ladies in the dressing room
with their mystical pets and cosmetics,
your effigy enthroned and looking like
some anyone not you–later on the other side
such weeping the wine can’t assuage now
the procession’s done, guests heading home,
treading on blossoms, their feet trailing ash.

 

 

 

 

Crypt

For us not now philosophers’ distress
so elegant and rectified,
a cri de coeur in fortified undress,
missing all the loss we find

as our former selves pass by,
thick with others’ thoughts and words.
Still, to say a true thing that will belie
our dark surmise that in this world

meaning is not in doing or what’s done–
wind shuddering the trees,
some turbulence, and then it’s gone.

 

 

 

Never Know

You never know how in the dark you are
Until the dark is in your eyes and in your bones
Until the only home you own’s the home you had
Until the good things that you love are bad.

You never know how far the dark is in
Till where you are is where you’ve always been
And where you’ve been is what you’ve never known
All the standard flaws and giving up.

You never really know how deep the cup
How tight the wire, how fit the glove
A gauge is just a thing for hanging on
Your measure when it’s here you’re gone.

You never really know how far you’ll go
Until there is a line that you won’t toe
Where you find the demon’s not your friend
You’ll never be the self you were again.