i wrote a poem while you were in the bathroom,
just now. i wrote it in my head. no you can’t read
it. i just met you. no this isn’t it. i promise, badly
i am the interim. the daylight parts and falls away
to my either side. these tatters are my vestments,
my wedding-train upheld by dusk + dawn. (a confused
image needs instruction) and, okay, here:
i am sitting in the sun. spring has forgotten to be
unkind to vermont today. the work of leaves continues apace
around me. i am being knit into idyl by threads
of birdsong. there was a log in the road, a victim, and
i carried it across my bare shoulders to the crossroad
and left it tucked in the woods. i don’t know why i did it
except that it made my steps heavy. and so i am wondering.
and so the day parts for me, demarcated left and right, fore
and aft. i am sitting in the cleft of the sunlight and wearing it.
had a poem but i lost it. something about dripping kohl
we are calling the fucking stars down,
do you understand?
and every time we are by our corporeal weakness
compelled to sleep they are closer.
the thousand inimitable prayers of our
many bodies are luring the heavens to us
and some day soon i think they will manifest
without a word of mercy in our yards and in our homes
and will scorch to death our pets
and anything else we have hidden under roofs
born on a monday,
by tuesday he was afraid.
on wednesday he reckoned
his life to the second;
thursday his debts were unpaid.
soloman grundy, by friday all sundry
did not let his quintessence fade.
saturday passed with his geas unsurpassed
but by sunday he still quite remained.
his rhymes lose their context
and lay with his bed all unmade.
a convict but living he put his
shoes under his bed and at the
end of the next week he was alive
without rhythm but there are worse
things than that, he guessed.
soloman grundy, born on a monday,
put his forehead to the ground
and felt the living earth in its vibration.
lets all of us together say a prayer
for the sad teens who are PRETTY SURE
they won’t outlive the decade and try,
together, confederate with the night, holding hands,
not to, as the sun is smashed across the new day like an egg
on a forehead,
say something like,
because we are older now and should be kind
to these 90%-sized iterations of ourselves that are
cooler than we were anyway, and have had more sex,
and felt bukowski more keenly. because we could say
that bukowski sucks after all but it is better to be brave and
endure, and teach these fulsome teens that endurance
is more a function of living than comfort ever was, and that
the urge to destroy yourself will never lessen but will be outbid
by other voices if they are allowed to develop. and all of this
is just a way to say that we are now the keepers of a conspiracy
by the mere virtue of not having done the obvious for so long.
somethin bout your
cuts my brake
i can’t be graceful tonight?? grace is what i try for most. yes yes beauty in simplicity etc but that should be deliberate and im not happy with how boring my brain is being right now
just once my father the gentlest of men was a bear.
i was very young and in a tree and about to fall and
he was suddenly bounding towards me with his teeth framed
white and sharp by his beard and he took me by the back of
the shirt and dangled me with one hand in front of his face
(the war mask of hector)
and was the loudest he has ever been at me and
then he crushed me against his soft chest and tucked my head
under his beard and kept me while i cried.
there is a cemetery in prague
where the rich have been planted,
and another for the ten thousand
victims of a plague. they hollowed
out the belly of the city for the plague dead
because they did not want to carry them far.
the cemetery of the rich is ugly
because they could not agree
how to style their graves. one has
a marble statue of the devil in flight. another
a hologram of the interred smiling weakly.
kafka was buried in a jewish cemetery that
i did not get to walk on because it was a
holy day but i saw his grave through the iron
bars and held my coat around myself because
it was cold and
the buttons had snapped off the day before.