Naturally I admire the future, its beeps, extreme temperatures, solitary confinement, dew on the rocks, drilling rigs. Little love words fresh from busy beds. Do I have the upper body strength? That is the question. Rise above, slip away quickly. Eyes are lubricated swiveling tools. Indicate you have seen someone by winking or smiling thinly. Avenues are perfect for walkathons. This intensity soon paid off. The horizon flipped, obliterated the sun. I ate tubers and cylinders of marrow in lieu of the missing tongue depressors.
I sleep with my head to the north in a green round room. I resemble a little god dying on a long gold chain. Squeezing, foreshortening, I think differently at the edge of the pool. But my brain is quiet as a cauliflower. Once inside I can’t see out, a line I don’t step over. The empty shoe in the foreground symbolizes wantonness, the fountain probably refers to fertility, the monkey, cunning, selfish, the sprinkled sky where the quick ones are satellites.
Letter to Poets
Use whatever’s at hand: cutouts. Press play. Everyone here says hi, the twins miss you. Each of your absences is silvery. Isn’t that what a winner feels like? You’re future by now, winners all. You cultivated T’ang, won goblets, circled the square and chanted the radius. Do those words seem quixotic now? It’s raining like that—lightweight. A woman’s mouth made of sound thundered in the mountains, adding a nice, fluffy topping to our convoluted cosmic sundae. Never volunteer.
In My Work Unit
You feel stupor and ooze. Everyone says this is how you should feel—boozy watching a small army scatter. They make helpful hints—Lucy for eye ailments, longer and healthier. I cleansed with a sponge, killed some. I loved the convenience, the unexpected concentration in one corner. We straighten the endless tails, comb out the rat nests, twice a day washing our wurst down with schnapps. Nights the same little dog whining at my gamy odor. That's a human for you. And why should we be any different than our beloved pets? Angry stockpiles. Pear-shaped fruits. I touched the sleeping husband's hand only to realize it was my own. Many of us repeat ourselves with tiny mirrors.
(From Either She Was, New York: Marsh Hawk Press, 2008)