Expired Link

This is a letter to the night. If you are not
the Night, please don’t be offended,
and feel free to repurpose this.
This poem is like a jar emptied out
to catch insects on a summer night,
but then not ever used. Left there
with the screw lid forever on, a yellow
scratched lid. The End.
(A smell of pickles will haunt it
longer than anyone you know
will be alive.)

Wait. I have something to tell the moss…

“I see something and I like something
and I copy it. I am like you in your green
cushions of breath. I copy it
the way you put down on earth breath
after breath, heartbeat after heartbeat.
We’re making a composition. There’s a reason
the stars stay up all day. They must have
blue insomnia.

“I still keep looking out the front door, checking
for the mail, even though there’s no longer
any house. ‘Get down off that table!’
the poem screams at me and claps
its hands angrily. My feet smack the carpet
and I stalk away in resentment, my tail
filled with poison now, ancient poison.

“This is an epistle written to the night,
the one that owes me money.”


I looked up to a sort of flash:
moon with a fish in its mouth
who came out of dark clouds,
prowled, a surprised cat
padded silently across
the floor of sky,
look up rooftops,
briefly wondered
why humans
watch it,
and then:
of night.

Guessed It All Along

I have this interstellar feeling,
I keep having this outer
space feeling, this awful
feeling, that when we get
to the end of the universe
by extragalactic probe or whatever,
some futuristic beam,
we will find another
universe begins there
like another dream,
and there will be this fence,
this ancient fence,
with a sign that refers
to us, to all of us,
and the sign will read
And the worst part
will be, the absolute
worst of it will be
that we’ll feel no need,
no earthly need
to wonder or ask

I’m Taking a Sky Day

Oh, I will admit it.
I want to fill my lungs
with starlight, and do
nothing all day.
Shrug the world off.
I want to percolate
mossy smoke and sing
softly to myself. I want
to be full of the talk show
of stars, their muzzy-headed
sort of interstellar gossip.
The stars talk about nothing
all the time. And seem happy.
I want to be in the world
and not all day, to hide
like the stars behind
that upside-down blue
cup we call the sky.
You will know I’m secretly
behind it, watching
absolutely everything
turn all day, watching
you, as the stars
secretly watch us
all day. If you really want
to reach me, just aim
your voice at the blue.

Blood Moon

Restless trees turn on microphones
because it is autumn again.
The staghorn sumac mocks the deer.
The moon mocks everything,
the haunted mini-golf course
by the forgotten highway
where the deer stand,
the dead ice cream cubicle
with its ghosts of hands
that offered edible Platonic forms
across the counter,
the miniature iron clubs
left inside the ice cream stand
that dates to the sixties,
shaped like a cosmonaut’s pod
in a museum. Everything
is ancient and new tonight,
including you.  The deer stand
on the pretend grass,
before the fiberglass
mountain and other
miniatures our game made.
The moon turns its blood
eye like a dead carp
to the window where
a young girl stands
with so much pity
for the world, she tries
to drink the overage
of the viscous blood,
wrong moonlight
from its very eye.


Science tells us
we shouldn’t worship the sun.
It’s let us in the cold before,
wouldn’t come closer during all those ice ages
where we froze to death.
It will someday reach out
and just incinerate us
with tongues of flame.
Creator, Preserver, Destroyer.
All the God bases covered.
Call it a deity or not.
The cycles stay the same.
Everybody curses it out
or dotes on its wonderful
qualities. So it exists.
But you seriously question
whether you will ever talk
face to face.

[3 a.m. crickets, wall of sound: the ghosts of monks chanting in the yard]

                                        Their mind mass slows to the cool
September air, the tempo a function of temperature,
their self-explanatory dying, told without pity. Count the beats
to know how much impersonal darkness they have left.
I can’t hear it impersonally. I want to personify the sound.
I believe there is someone making that sound,
even if my someone is only dark splinters on the ground.
I feel it’s talking to me, and somehow performing my mind.
If I can’t take it any longer, I will throw open the front door
of my house and yell at them. They will grow quiet for a moment
as if listening to me. And then they (no they there) will continue
their chant. The sound will close back over me
like starlight, and I will drown in that.