Dangling

Where are you asleep
And can I touch you there
The spiderweb you gave me so lightly
I can’t seem to sunder its threads
Its words, filaments of light

Oh, you are the darker wavelengths for sure

You will have guessed by now
My hatred of you was not hatred
The hatred I turned to disbelief
A doorknob with no door
A door with no house
That sort of logic

I knew you would only repeat as the comet
You are an inveterate repeater
Because you are desire and more
I leave a place for you at the table
The table is a dream, an alphabet
I leave a place for you also at the lake
The lake is only another table
A place for you to dangle feet

I save a place for you there

And in the cemetery next to me I hold your seat

Since I hope to shamelessly continue

I am still much interested in the crime of your hand

 

 

Dear Nathanael

You have broken my heart. You were not at the agreed upon place where we were to meet. Am I using too many words in a sentence? I know that is a symptom of a larger problem. “Where we were to meet.” I am eating craisins from a small foil package to assuage my nervousness. Admittedly, this is not an attractive sight. But I cannot see myself externally, except in sentences. There is nothing here. A frozen lake….or pond. Whatever. And a telephone pole. Are you going to murder me? Should I run before you get here? Or will you never get here? I saw headlights but it was a mirage.

Dear Nathanael,

You have broken my liver.

The Bed

I saw you die into my life
like a bird sucked into a wind tunnel

you try not to laugh
when it is a cartoon death

maybe they all are
ours too

So you would rise every day
as if from a grave with candles around your body

a map of the otherworld
that is all your body was anymore

our bedroom I called Haiti
I would blow out the candles, muss your hair

But one day I covered the bed in bread
slices of white bread

they touched shoulder to shoulder
and we lay down on them

and came into each other’s arms
I needed you to feel it

the springiness of bread

what it is to be alive

Skylarking

The morning abacus of rain on a wire
The wren watching it
Aches with a small intelligence
Which makes its wings dear to those who love the vulnerable
Jack-in-the-box of consciousness
In all its animal forms
One drop sliding down into another
In all its siren forms
As a frog eating a bubble of a smaller frog
Not yet born, maybe within a gelatin
Things get carved as gods
Things get starved
The abacus slides on
As numbers try to catch their siblings
On the arrowed line
The headlights of eggy cars slice through this our foggy scene
The mind is opened as the late century’s cans are opened
Clumsily, by hand
Commuters off to work
Starve on
Don’t think about existing
As, Or, For
The energy in a paper clip
Dropped on the sidewalk
Waits its musical coils of cheap metal
Clef of the organized thoughts
Slapping the jive
Paragraphs like butterflies
Chaos goes through a moth confused that it’s a butterfly
Oh Dear God, Dear Social Media
It’s okay to let a thought just die
Even the bluest ones
Those militant skies
Atoms are goofing off inside molecules
Physics tells them to behave
Reins them in like a mother
But it’s no use crying
That sparrow comes out of a cinematic fog right at your face
It couldn’t be any funnier if it was a pub’s dart
A pop tart
But evolution changes its mind at the last moment
And we are here, humming our inability to fly
Right this moment
Grounded
Mofo
It’s cold out there
Ima go outside
Right now and
Pity every
goddamn bird

A Random

The earth said to the fern
that fell against it
green nothingness of air
shaped to a sort of weird hand
what are you doing?
why are you in my bed?
press me
said the fern
I will press against you
let me leave my form
in you
how? asked the earth
this way, said the plant
to the planet
and a million years
flew over the heads
they never had
and here is the fossil
in your hand
the white chalk
so dead
so sexy
they marked each other
so

For the Rain

What does the rain mean
We speak as if the words
are anything
What does the rain mean
endlessly threading its needle
in the country and in the cities
The elbows rest on windowsills
What could the rain mean
if not the punctuation
of the sky
its attempts to focus
where you are going with your thoughts
your terrible thoughts
by inserting this pause
and this green breathing
goodbye

Ghost Story

We had come out of the ghetto to sit
in the heaven of a Thai restaurant
           just once
        at the edge of the gunfire
Little canal decorations on the table lit up
The waitress had red tassel earrings like a goddess
It must have been Christmas       or something like
We were young for nearly eighty
We had glass noodles, existentialist soup
Halfway through our meal, a young man came bleeding through the door
and shot us all to death
Now the restaurant is gone these many years
It’s a car dealership that we haunt
You can hear our tongues      wagging romance
sometimes,     still,      nearly eighty years old
in the tongues       of the little tinsel metallic flags
used to sell cars

But

But I wanted love to be a quickening like sugar, she said, as we entered the dark park. We entered the dark slope of the park in autumn. We had all breath sucked out of us going downhill. It was entering a Brueghel painting. Or worse.

Dark park slope, read us.

The trees reached for us. They were in their own motives. Trees bare of leaves, no longer possessed of the business of themselves. Or so it seemed. They had to do what, just dream all winter long? Just keep the sap moving, I guess. How not to think of neon, loneliness used to outline bars. Leftover humans. It makes me think of leftover humans with rug burns. Talking about them forever.

All our muses were stray dogs.

On ledges.

The serrated park was separated from the prison on the hill by a creek where the Canada geese had their menages in summer. They had their menages on the water. Mostly fighting with other couples. There were really just four of them. Maybe they had lovers too. A filthy creek. The prison, we looked up to it. Just then: no geese. The light bulbs were coming on inside, out. It was a unification principle. Some of the lights were odd greens. Getting dark early, the men must have stirred harder.

The men with figures in their heads, constantly counting back to acts. Who does that?  Useless, locked up ponytails.

Farming the human body gets you there. I mean menders with drugs.

We flowed down the hill talking blithely of sugar, love, death, vegetables gone sour. Here eat this, she said, meaning a strange fruit she had picked from the ground like a poison dream in a fairy tale. I laughed. There was a jagged glass ring on a branch end, neck of a broken bottle someone (probably a kid) had stuck there. The bethrothal. I marry you, forced nature, with this piece of broken glass.

There had been an actual wedding here a week ago. Parks are never safe from brides and grooms. Pastel tissue flowers melted in the rain. There was inexplicably a hunk of watermelon. The dogs jerked back like Frankenstein’s monsters when we screamed. The watermelon was a bomb, we told them. Dogs will believe anything. We are a social state suddenly. When we have pets. Other people had touched it. All the animals that follow, who come after other people have left, they must have had their mouths all over it. Easy watermelon, I distrust you. If something is dropped or dipped in nature, it will be much scrutinized and then enter all mouths when the appropriate, manipulative stars shine.

There is a hatred of easiness, easiness.

We were in relation to each other but bugging.

It is a way to be, sitting on tree trunks as we were now never known, listening to our own stories like skeins of geese that had passed over us quite some time back, giving us a reference point for the narrative we would soon chuck into the all night grocery store. Maybe 3 a.m. talking to overlapping lobsters, milling carapaces in a glass tank refracts them in ways they will never know.

What you said, what I said, as the prison on the hill dreamt.