Winter 2012, #18



Your Finest Clothes Are Those You Wear as Soldiers
     -Virginia Woolf

The isle of Washington eats her own,
dresses in spongy light, a story ballet
of wild geese chewing almonds
from the inside out
by a pond well-stocked with jackals.
Such is the life that would go
unnoticed if we see only (the ghosts of bereavement).
We carry cases, a war of faces, artifacts,
conical death-shaped hats
and a largess throughout the occupation.
Put them all on your head, the crowns.
These arms have stone too &
in stone we speak.
What use is a diary of dreams
if to spy on your sleep
is to travel at the prow of one's self?
Every passage though,
we may not know them
by sight-we are them, are the use value
we procure from
the economies we fixate, we dilate,
taxonomies we fluster
and end to become bodies on display,
religion in the hands of matter as shapes,
fleeting, the hours, these little houses of seasides.

The Moon Becomes You

No one really hides in a clock, but is that my egg-eye
holding hard the paw's secondhand?
What era did you burn out in? No one beats
the weather of machines where each bee,
a hovering cloud by the house,
goes furry with wings of salt.
Liquid air contracts in red: the pupil mother
evaporates milk in her rosebud plot.
She aches without a pedagogy paddle, the one I limn
with looks from the horsey freedoms-
her quick whip sideways, holding us steady
on reflecting pools that dance with ancient fairies
and wayward gnomes afloat. A map
swallows everywhere, one shade of learning
that darkens oarless doors. Whitecaps drift us.
We hear the daze of geography shape
the annals of our mazes into a culture of one,
a widowed gulp as if to enter we walk
the craters holy on the cleated spirals of iris, solo.

The Curve of Death

In fact, the sky has stopped.
I love you baby, my round-headed woman,
my peach of the granite earth,
my stone core hard of the heart
punching everyone's chest a beat apart.
Such eggs shred their ghostly rags,
machine cogs gone all technical
on me. Where's
the loss, the sufferer,
the breast that rips with a dovetail's rustle
and the china the bull slips to miss,
tearing his rotator cuff just enough
never to lift his own arm again
to the silver screen
star all the way high above a crowd
of bird heads that says Me, I am waiting
for here, you, a silver stallion lost
to see the motherless too,
between the difference of murder
and my sister killing the one-eyed jet
gone AWOL with a needle's
eyeball apart, a plan
to win the stadium's center
in Paris, Texas with this cigarette tip,
fingers of driftwood & steel
gray hairs declaring I've passed the curve
of death, a human pear
in the genesis of the sphere-shaped knife,
an eye to cancel our planet's core out.

How Will My Enemies

Some sailboats drift and oar-less bikes run
amok in marshes that mar our speedy licks
for the taste of foreign girls that smoke and show
their legs, the ones you can't touch without
a price tag the size of Tahiti.
Such a lovely cross to wear, not one place that does not see you:
you must return to life,
see the brain's seizures as thought's carbuncles,
escape the straight jackets, escape a fit that won't allow
the Panopticon's blindspot
from general streets of random twins & boys into girls & lesbians.
No excuse for the way we handle material possessions,
but making love go dollar-designated is like
stopping by the snowy palace early nighttime to dine
as kings with wallets of peasants and the meals that mean
next in line is sex's sacrifice and our own religious submissions.
But how will my enemies find each other?
They can pile the salt
of their characters into flickering mounds,
set little blazes toward the great causes of hope.
Hope the cake won't blow back
into their nostrils, their snorting eyes,
turn their tear ducts into swampy envy, these tiny engines of me.
I'm McCarthy and Homeland Security incarnate.
For them, I'm the regal eagle to shoot their buttery
bullets at. I wrap the false shroud of Turin about the aping
hang of their panting heads, flaunting the sum of all I can want.