If she had a sea

If she had a sea

 

If she had a sea, her sea

is smothered

in the dark wall

preserved in rubble

and ash; if she had

a voice, her voice

absorbed—anechoic

chamber of the repeating

image, as any

private gesture

repeats in daily

life—effortless;

she reaches

back to pinch

a stem between thumb

and second finger,

gold dress slips

from her shoulder,

illusion of movement,

feet pointed

toward a sea

on the far side

of the wall, one

basket, one plant,

one woman, illusion

of white flowers

on trace of green.

The surface of linen

dress peels back

in patches, as if

watching her burn

over a held flame.

 

 

Reference: woman picking flowers, fresco, Pompeii; National Archaeological Museum, Naples

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Living spaces

Living spaces

 

our living space, squared to incorporate

formed conversation in palpitations of lung,

eyes, tongue, navel, ceramic, tv,

razor, the horizon

monumented in the macerate dark,

and talk neutral foray in a hesitation

of moves, bone white, that was a haloing.

 

The sudden set, the razor, to the horizon—all

anticipated investments in the nonlocal

economy, since starlight is portioned, transferable.

 

Bone white is a haloing over the plasticized mountain,

while remnant of online shopping

is delivered through violet figures on the screen.

 

Patio furniture, when dissected,

is new, and sitting there, awkward

to sit among ourselves at times. It seems

perfectly averaged to dwell in the space

upon anticipate silences, of late arrivals

silhouette before a plasticized mountain.

Handing down embers

Handing down embers

 

gravity does not prevent we are distinct

with each other; fluid blue, paint

against the likelihood of reaching,

and the outer-reaching in strings and blots upon it

 

we are noisy together, varied radios

working wavelengths, but reaching

brings us to the catalytic canvas, distinct

 

and noisily circles our fingers

through pools as hues make gold speak

true, mythopoeic fact:

 

creates, and knowledge assumed from many fires

extraction till we cradle our implements

 

in extraction, even though descent,

to pour our bequest into the site,

where the hues speak true

 

and true to our inherited noise, the ember

pours from one hand to the next hand

to the next

Grown in the dark

Grown in the dark

 

There is a way to make

this entirely physical,

the body’s fault

to crave. There is a way

to talk, verbal penance,

until punishment

becomes commonplace.

 

Till driving by

at night, the object

illuminates in spotlight.

The man, there, functions

as priest, at ease

with hackneyed miracle

or spiritual possession.

 

What is there to say

that is enough change

to show in neon light,

and why must indulgence

be costly, complete?

 

This talk is supposed

to stay small, anonymous,

as mundane as murder.

 

 

Patios

Patios

The plastic table cloth, the one they used since the 50’s because it still worked; cartoon figures saying things we don’t say, like “hot dog!” to mean “cool”. The home-welded barbecue, together we circled ’round flags stuck in bottle necks, there to decorate and anchor; matchbooks’ cinder, the thermometer, in a right-here-right-now temperature, and the fly swatter’s unpredicted swat.

I once knew patios by pools, but they were not mine. There was just the one known well, that dawned on the house grandfather built with a mind for not exactly this, nondescript rectangle of cement, with too many risky chairs to sit except for the great grandmother, while she was still there. The old people we can’t bear to watch eat, and patient, pass the pickles when she asks.

We must have pickles, omnivorous, German hand-me-down desire for pickles we had, making them out of anything we grew, on the hodge-podge of chairs to sit for a minute, for hours, or a lifetime with the cigar and the furniture that didn’t fit in the house only made it thus far. But daughter-sister, you know it troubles everyone to question the order of things, despite it’s true.

When you’re there, it all makes sense, to hope the strong breeze comes up and moves us, to clip the tablecloth corners and hunker down, before the breeze that moves stagnant air away from the house, away to move freely, the further out we make it, picked up on the breeze that expands the garden flags, the edges of this patio only lightly attached, attached enough, to qualify as our corner of the world.

Having this time together

Having this time together

Among the clothes we wear, a thought takes shape around the living being shaped of molecules laughing, when she asks for my ID a second time, so sure I had changed that much in a minute! Just between you and me: chopsticks, table, plate, cloth, window, haze, your eyes, hands’ gesture, habitual like everything we do.

What of the greens? 58 shades of green we named, with stages of each from birth to death to remains, shadows in the world we walk through. We know asparagus, avocado greens, but the rifle green, the office green, the Russian green. And oh, the celadon.

We have so much to learn! we have lived so long to forget, having roots in grass and grow, and in it, the treason of naming, as to hold you named is to own, to fathom.

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