The Harbor

You see, there is a pond and a telephone pole
“You see” is the vernacular
It is the language of the immigrant just off the boat
So polite, softening the blow
Or the one explaining to the one stepping off the boat
The condescending or begging side of it
That is our patriotism
A pond and a telephone pole at a polite distance
Maybe it is a large pond
Generally, I don’t really know what the size of anything is in life
I’m not Home Depot
The late evening light above these two things is not fair
The evening clouds above this duo are in riot beauty gear
Orange fluorescence of clouds, like looking up into the piled guts
Of some weird divinity
You don’t want to put a face to it
Let it stay guts
Those people can admittedly be annoying
The ones who need a face attached to it
Admittedly, it exists!
Am I already on the other side?
As the clouds move, as they “off themselves” in the vernacular
It is a feeling like soap
I am bathing old limbs of my mind
In this new soap
It is a feeling like a thought
For the telephone pole (that could have been there a century)
And the pond of indeterminate scale or size
Think the colors like a painting where you don’t know where anything                                                                                                                 begins or ends
Some sorta Whoville maybe
The clouds are set design, they are being changed
No other structure anywhere near these things
(I don’t count me)
Just myself and a spinning armor of a compass
Just myself and a spinning arrow of a compass
I meant
Do you  why Freudian analysis was in the humanities, really,
And not in science, and you are really too young to remember Freud,
The targets he put on heads
Freudianism, it’s a feeling     maybe a sap
It is shooting a b.b. gun, for sure
I have come to watch it freeze      I mean a lake      pond
You see, I have enlarged its idea already in my mind
Like a pawnbroker, like a realist
There is this grocery list
I have plagiarized reality
I have come to stare at this pond and its (I think its) pole
I have come to watch it freeze to death
That disincarnate side, it is talking most
Though you are a stranger, I know
There are rules to you, to baseball, to everything
In your incertitude of being, its warmth, it is freezing
In your uncertitude of being, its warmth, it is freezing
I prefer it wrong
The surface of the pond is an old television
And an old dead t.v. moves in wind out there somewhere across the ice
I hadn’t realized it had already frozen
No longer an old broken television set hockey puck howling winds
Like a television show
I hadn’t realized it had froze
Fast to earth        as babe to tit
That quick or how long was I standing here?
Somebody tried to throw it through the surface
To crack the pond’s face mightily, to operatically break it
But all they did was craze its face with details
Hypnotic thousandfold details
Scratched black vinyl in the middle of the night
When the moon is shy
The way we will be reliving our lives as musical variations with age
It is no use trying to be like today today
Standing around on a street corner doing nothing you’d do better
The surface crunches underfoot   crazies     talks to itself
When I walk out on the ice to pet the t.v.
It has a face pointed to the west
It is getting dark
It has a kind face
A youthful face though it is lying
Will anyone ever fish it out
After it falls through?
It’s like theory
It is like meeting you today or it was meeting you today
Which was, I think, spitting watermelon seeds    erotically
Into each other’s mouths like a performance in a basement
We were in folding chairs
You will wish to recall
I’m sorry, this is not a poem;  this is an arson
All aboard, I hope
Unless you have been displaced too as this pond, this telephone pole
Unless you are safely cold
Like the pole and lake or pond whatever it is
At least they have each other
I mean god,  could you imagine it if it was just either one out there?



Its hands will be alive even after death
These are translucencies not beasts of burden
Its own star is trying to come to it
The hands may have had a nest
When they were alive, I mean
The hands braid weeds in the pond
Down under the surface the morning
Under the reflection the star
Down under the lilac, plane of morning
These sable hairs and pigment
They want to die a little sometimes
To lie under long, abstruse purple
As the painters of the afternoon
When they are asleep
As tea spoons, as sills
Covered in thick white dust
of the done, of what they have not done


All of this is for the other, the glorification of the other.
That the other might light up,
refuses, light up.

Your DNA is cold and alone.

The only thing which can occur is the magnification
of acts. It is a tree and we decorate it
with lights in a dark season.

Your DNA has plans for you.

“These words are not clusters
but plasmas,” I promised.

The blond couple walks alongside the river, along
coldness, on top of planks they walk
as in a woodcut, hand in glove,
they are pointing,
expanding, a contract
that lovers strike up, fingers aimed
to well-tuned whispers
out over a bay’s slant dark heft of blue
at evening.

Someone’s DNA attempts to blur it.

They click and mutter as animatronics
of a Japanese haunted house. A sky looks this way
over an ocean, it is flame-retardant,
two-dimensional. As we have Munch’s

tepid Annunciations, we smile
sourly into them:

headaches of desire, vampires, clocks,
coat hangers,
orbs on the horizon, naked old men
become profiles,
standing haunts
turning back to woods. These things

happen for a reason. Your DNA
is caustic, trapped. There is a sheep
wandering the distance,

grazing a cold green line towards a mountain,

but it is no lamb.

in the sunflowers, with their little flame skirts of God

I remember that summer
playing ping pong with you
in a clean madhouse

in which you were confined
and wondering,
“Do I have to let him win?”

It was back in the days
when they dressed you
in funny bathrobes,

and insist you make
collages of your feelings,
hang them near the ceilings.

There were always
cheap Van Gogh repros
from K-Mart on the walls

up and down the halls,
but never the good ones
like the bloodied ear

or the times where
V.’s face turned into stars
as he screamed blue spirals.

It was always the sunflowers (or like that).
But you said you weren’t fooled.
You knew that’s what he fell under

when the bullet went in
and failed to do its job
so miserably.

That had something to do
with the reason
you were there.

You always said
his last painting
should have been under them,

looking up
to show how easily
they turned their faces

up, up and away

towards the fire

that drives the day.


“If I were a century younger
maybe I would understand,”
one building downtown says
to another building, its neighbor,
flirting shamelessly with every pedestrian
on the pavement below. They caress
its walls with their hands in passing.
There are things we squeeze out
of other beings just by being ourselves.
Those people must be like tubes of paint.
My favorite is the tube of ultramarine.
Because it has such dumbfounding coverage.
There’s no such thing as a mistake
if you are truly ultramarine. You just smear
more of you all over everything and no worries.
There is this meta-trope that life is a composition.
But you have to buy into that idea of linear time.
I don’t. Who lives that way, really? You do?
Seriously? You don’t go back to the beginning
and play it all over again as you will with a song?
You don’t mix all the times together at once
or fall in love with your life backwards
as Capricorns do? Then I pity you.
The ocean opts to live with no skyline.
“I respect your ultramarine decision,”
I tell the ocean every time I go past
it blue front door open on my own weird sense of time.