Archive for November, 2011

The World Made Up for Us

November 29, 2011

The brides have passed all of the sentence tests
that Polyhymnia wanted. She asked
them to teach us how the earth became
a sullen crib. She thought the brides should sing
of nightmares and miracles, not freedoms.
If we have come to know our strengths, she said,
then perhaps we have come to love our failures
too much. Write it. This is a test.

If Polyhymnia, then nothing is transitory,
just the vast ebbing out of what always flows away.

As Polyhymnia is, there is no sentence here,
just the quiet susurration in her lips.       

Of Polyhymnia, her stone lips breathe silence,
for espousal has always been a poem to awake to.

For ancient, aimless, almost airless Polyhymnia,
the courtier of our language,

the world is made up for us. Always.

A Rememberance of Thanksgivings Past

November 24, 2011

This might be a good time to look back at a story I wrote for Thanksgiving a couple of years ago.

Untitled

November 21, 2011

Notation

November 16, 2011

Mr. Pumpkinhead, a jack-o-lantern
washed up on the beach,
is being picked apart by gulls, who scatter

and wail and keen at our intrusion.
You can almost see its dancing footprints in the wet
silt sand, see its shadows waltz among the surf…

We pause in a kind of clownish longing
inside an equally clownish longueur—
as if poetry itself should get louder and longer.

Every wave is listening now.
They have been made so brittle and dumb by
the approaching storm, they seem to be

lace cutouts stitched and wreathed together.
A clam shell will serve us for their ears.
The maestro’s hand is in the maestro’s glove.

His baton is ready. The music appears.
Is it an old Michael Jackson tune?
Or the Camptown Races song?

Is it even sound at all that approaches us this morning?
Or is it just the sun, soft and quiet on the horizon,
conducting all the ocean’s giant calliope?

Too Sweet

November 6, 2011

I never noticed the wallpaper
until we took the furniture
out of their bedroom.
I would have said the walls
were painted tan or grey or green,
not all those flowers repeated
around the room,
not the nosegay bouquet,
not the cerulean dreams
my mother must
have thought so cheery.

And you can still smell
the too sweet perfume too,
still winding down the stairs,
still protesting existence.

One of the Persimmons

November 4, 2011

If you will forgive me, sir…
I ate one the persimmons.
There were six, but one
was bruised and I knew you wanted
the picture to be a balance
of brush strokes
and paint and persimmon.
Like Mu Qi. I know you think perfection
is an illusion found in art alone, but…

It could have been a wormhole
sir, that persimmon, past death,
so delicious, so cold.

Five

November 3, 2011

One of the Persimmon

November 2, 2011

Most noble patron,
you’ll have to forgive me
for I ate one the persimmons.
There were six, but one
was a little bruised and I knew you wanted
the picture to be perfect,
a sort of balance of brush strokes
and paint and persimmon,
like that famous painting by Mu Qi,
and I know you think perfection
is an illusion found in art alone, but…
it could have been a passage to another
dimension, a wormhole past death,
that persimmon.