Tuesday, August 24, 2010

This country of beauty and madness as an old ditty from ze '80s goes. Or Beauty and the Bus, like a faerie tale gone wrong. Oh.
I've always imagined flowers to be smart.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

While squandering a good chunk of lunchbreak reading and smoking, I realized how escape is impossible without something to escape from. For this, I am grateful for work. For this I am grateful for this world that allows us to imagine rocketships and time machines and parallel possibilities and multiverses and manholes and secret doors.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

To Thursday

You are happening
and hip almost

weekend almost
swaggering out

of here now you

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

a loose leaf, given to flight with the slightest of the wind's provocations

Friday, June 11, 2010

The Possible Tree

Swallowing a santol seed, I turned to my grandfather and asked
if I would die. He laughed and said darling, santol does not kill.

It only grows into a tree with branches as thick as these –
he flexed his farmer’s arms for emphasis – sprouting out

of your ears. Now whenever words escape me or a song
bursts into a quiet chorus, a furtive finger finds its way

into both canals, checking for leaves. I wait for the world to grow
still. Long after discovering science and frailty, some of us continue

with the story and find out that every event leads to silence, all music
aspires for silence, the interior of sound is silence, already silence

is within us silent and unseen, there is a silence waiting
in an abandoned house in the field, in the shaking walls of the heart.

Back to the Future!

If the devil is 6 then God is 7 / This monkey's gone to heaven
- Pixies

7 months and a job and a lifetime later, I find myself back. Just like that, like the prodigal son or the alcoholic dad come home or that dude from The Beach civilized and clean again in the city or Lazarus come back from the dead.

I can't quit this life/style just yet. So Jesus and Satan will have to bid some more.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

A Fantasy

I'll tell you something: every day
people are dying. And that's just the beginning.
Every day, in funeral homes new widows are born,
new orphans. They sit with their hands folded,
trying to decide about this new life.

Then they're in the cemetery, some of them
for the first time. They're frightened of crying,
sometimes of not crying. Someone leans over,
tells them what to do next, which might mean
saying a few words, sometimes
throwing dirt in the open grave.

And after that, everyone goes back to the house,
which is suddenly full of visitors.
The widow sits on the couch, very stately,
so people line up to approach her,
sometimes take her hand, sometimes embrace her.
She finds something to say to everbody,
thanks them, thanks them for coming.

In her heart, she wants them to go away.
She wants to be back in the cemetery,
back in the sickroom, the hospital. She knows
it isn't possible. But it's her only hope,
the wish to move backward. And just a little,
not so far as the marriage, the first kiss.

Louise Gluck

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Loud Music

My stepdaughter and I circle round and round.
You see, I like the music loud, the speakers
throbbing, jam-packing the room with sound whether
Bach or rock and roll, the volume cranked up so
each bass notes is like a hand smacking the gut.
But my stepdaughter disagrees. She is four
and likes the music decorous, pitched below
her own voice-that tenuous projection of self.
With music blasting, she feels she disappears,
is lost within the blare, which in fact I like.
But at four what she wants is self-location
and uses her voice as a porpoise uses
its sonar: to find herself in all this space.
If she had a sort of box with a peephole
and looked inside, what she’d like to see would be
herself standing there in her red pants, jacket,
yellow plastic lunch box: a proper subject
for serious study. But me, if I raised
the same box to my eye, I would wish to find
the ocean on one of those days when wind
and thick cloud make the water gray and restless
as if some creature brooded underneath,
a rocky coast with a road along the shore
where someone like me was walking and has gone.
Loud music does this, it wipes out the ego,
leaving turbulent water and winding road,
a landscape stripped of people and language-
how clear the air becomes, how sharp the colors.

- Stephen Dobyns