Oh, wild fields at night
in the middle of a city
where hips tumble goldenrod
oh cellsea
the white armrest
I mean the window in back
of the homeless shelter
I mean a black arrest
under a bell jar at night
these are just, the courts
I mean basketball
Sodium edge painted night
contemporary drawings of insects
around two orange lights
that watch over the tennis courts
at 3 a.m. and 3:01 a.m.
as if there were no difference
when the minute changes
when this nonexistent number
suddenly falls, neither
digital nor analog
just a thing
though you stand and watch
the empty courts
when it happens
and believe

[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.