Night Snow

It is laid
and it falls.
It is here
and there
and every page
of the night
forgets its number.
It is though
and it is past
and it is coming
as the cyclops
eye of a train
delayed a mere
few centuries.
You know
the whistle.
It lays down
a tablecloth
over the lake.
It is in the lamps
of the streetlights
and the dark places
between houses
where they
cannot touch
but only grow bars
and other places
where people
become mushrooms,
can only
look and look
at the brightness
between
all things
dead and busy
in the darkness,
through no window.

The Stare

I keep opening the front door
of this cold house,
middle of the night,

to look out into the snow.

So many prepositions in the snow.

It is here and it is falling.

No one home but me.
And no one expected.

But the little cat tracks in the snow!
Who comes to visit
this frozen

food bowl on my porch?

It is everything

mimicking the night.

And no one home.
And no one expected.

Old Man at Faucet

The spigot
grows dark
becomes more
becomes more itself
more happenstance
It flows relentless
less personalized
lighter
because heeded less
the sense of cold
of the water
beginning to speak
begging
louder
cold taken apart
from water
The sense of a river
behind it
the yawn
of its source
a terror thing
as the yawn
of memory
widens the mouth
of the river
where no one
stands or looks
tonight tonight
where no body is
since they are all
downstream
In another room
another house
or apartment
It is only
a clear glass
of water
in another’s
turning hand
as the fish
in the river
young
and constantly
turning

 

Who Knows

Perhaps nothing
It is hard to see through those blinds
The way the hands are always trying to see
Through the fingertips

Maybe it opens on an alley
Another narrowness of experience

But maybe it opens like the snow around a streetlight
When you are looking up at night
The immense chrysanthemum of snow
And there is the sting of it in your eyes
Which open wider nonetheless
As if to punish you

With joy

 

Searchlight

The rain is scribbling against the window
Each time I look it’s a different monoprint
of the oh-so-artistic night
A mouse snuck into our house
I can’t type “sneaked,” I’m sorry
It sounds a rodent in sneakers
I suppose it’s the negative degrees
I lit a candle
The cat sniffed for its blood
We had fun
I text you these words
Thoughts from the nineteenth century
Please bring home milk and bread
I look like a witch in this candlelight
Does any of this make you horny?

Railed

At night, Amtrak
and the thing
past billboards
lights up.
The MISSING posters
staple-gunned
to telephone poles
start to glow,
to radiate,
to speak,
and animals looking out from them
start to be
night hammerers,
curious
about the region’s others,
they ask from each to each,
“Hey, Quo Vadis?”
as lines connect
them, animals
whose faces,
ancient mystères
as Renaissance portraits
meant more to bemuse
than reveal, Holbein,
Sittow, human rat
or divine, those lips
just won’t say,
on which their souls
sit and then flit,
so as with constellations
of the night. And a darkness out there,
just past our window
is the greatest movie
on earth, its crackling
drags of interstellar
blacks of grooves
and thoughts a murderer’s
hatpins. So what, walk
from MISSING “Rose”
to MISSING “Sam”
all night
and you will hear
yowls in the distance
that might be
small-fanged bits
of home
who were
misplaced
by the cold,
religious night.
They might even
have forgotten
their names
in being
owned.

Nox

what do we know
of what we know
ice    transparency

sea      though something
for it     to exist
opaque things

disturb    a mountain
holds up      eyeglasses
reading       lull us asleep

moth in the night
blotting a moon    pale green

tablecloth of the picnic

who knows

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.”

Claustrophobia

To what to be close? To white tiny
hairs on the ears of night?
To hold such office
at the darkest window
of the tallest office blight?
To syncope, sliding like a cloth
off the shoulder of a planet?
To round of circle, to blue
of sty? To oryx, to Arabella,
prefix, suffix of thought
and feeling, evolution’s
dear uncertainty,
delicate cosmic thing
of a robin’s egg
cupped in child palm?
To the rigging
in which it all lives,
to the marble faun
at whose feet a crush
of styrofoam cup?
To his archaic street,
satyr’s sense of smile,
an author of white stone.
To slickness of soap,
to barren coin
of monster emperor,
to homeyness, homelessness,
none the better
for any difference
is how shelter
managed to conceive
itself? To what
to hearken, to hold,
to burrow, to invade,
to throw to appetite,
to mourn, to forget,
to be, without knowing
one is? To telescope
shut in the end,
to hold the infinitive
sense close
as the apple
reaching out
from the tree’s
core, a score,
somehow, to
her, to
Eve.

Deer in Headlights

There is a foam around facts that is mind. It is even like this standing in Starbucks, stumbling on the phenomenal world. That too is called mind. The stare looks for the mind in stumbling through Venti, Trenta facts. And you want to be a Rolodex of poems! But this looking is just headlights of cars in the mountains at night. It is only the thrill of a solitary deer standing there in a field. Eyes, radium. Sometimes you are like Madame Curie and sometimes not. Fiddling with the radio in the car. A stare looks for the mind in facts, in folds of facts. The stare seeks some thing staring back. Bold and bared. Not an eye for not an eye. But it is mist translation. The mountain at morning is grateful you are gone.