Hearses

    A professor once wrote me that to write of fruit or flowers or dreams, no matter how deftly, is the lowest form of metaphor, after processions. Years later, on the subject again, she that time indicted horses as … Continued

O.

The pleasures of the streets, perfumed with hazelnuts and cheese, medieval rivers, edges reduced to ice. Of walking irregular stones, past the silent, frustrated dead, in black shoes with laces. As we pass, my eyes meet his (same sad longing) … Continued

Historic District

    With purpose, you pull up the blinds. Light enters the room like a feeling violating a man. Sitting up in a bed built for a husband and a wife, I think for a second nature has taken us … Continued

[For the first time…]

translated by Nancy Naomi Carlson for the castaways of the Ker Anna       For the first time, we were naked. Who taught us to fall from the tree? What power had we wasted? To which blood founding our … Continued

[Pour la première fois…]

aux naufragés du Ker Anna   Pour la première fois, nous étions nus. Qui nous apprit à tomber de l’arbre ? Quel pouvoir avions-nous perdu ? A quel sang édifiant les palabres ? Combien d’oiseaux seront éperdus au bastingage de … Continued

The Philosophy Student

Translated from Italian by Stiliana Milkova   the philosophy student dreams she has insomnia her hair grows at night spilling from her bed even-numbered strands sprout into serpents’ heads odd-numbered strands splice into steel scissors serpents and scissors battle while … Continued

Heart Out

For Marina       My friend tells me my courage is my vulnerability, that in my overthrow of self lies refinement. What part un-hindering & what part exchange? Is it courage that extends the detangling of days? Maybe so. … Continued

Dog Ears

    Flouncing when she trots, Perked, cocked, flopped, Flattened, swiveled at Prompts of joy or itch Or curiosity, velvet Flaps opening on secret Zones of sound more Precious than what’s Hidden inside any silken Purse—awareness’s soft Synecdoches, alert just … Continued

Prepared Instruments

 After V.W. & H.D.T. How I wish someone would draft These lines for me. Perhaps I could Revise, develop, finish them, but Then whom would I owe, and what Would be demanded?  Someone Young, I suppose—amused or kind Or shrewd, … Continued

Further Notice

      Later, in the dream of having bought a rambling seaside house, in which just a few rooms had been finished—furnished, decorated— while others remained box-cluttered, empty of design or even purpose, I find a man I know … Continued

The Pretty Red-Head

“O Sun it is the time for flaming judgment,”—Guillaume Apollinaire, “La Jolie Rousse”   Always I was misunderstanding the words. Too many guns in the air to be happy. The news but a sour case of pink eye with a … Continued

Wilder Bluer Yonder

I packed my bags and left my home, and when I got to the edge, I did what everyone does and stepped off into the great blue Yawn, which I was surprised to find (though I shouldn’t have been) never … Continued

A Comforting Return

    1. On my desk, two silver and black pens— Zebra pens—wait casually at weird angles for the beginning of something         And in one of the corners of the room, a ghost-silver guitar fashioned after a … Continued

Your longed-for true form

      I watched the ceiling from my low bed. It bent when the girls danced upstairs. I looked out that window for a year, saw the water low under the bridge. I stayed as still as I could … Continued

Target™ Haibun

    I like driving around, especially in my yoga pants. I like getting out of the car, locking it, dangling my keys from my middle finger, walking through the parking lot, and into Target. When I’m longing, I like … Continued

Judith

translated from Polish by Mira Rosenthal   A bored married couple of actors in front of a full hall rattle off their lines Bride and Bridegroom from the Song of Songs. Do you remember? I don’t want it that way: … Continued

Judyta

  Znudzone sobą małżeństwo aktorów przy pełnej sali odbębniało kwestie Oblubienicy i Oblubieńca z Pieśni nad Pieśniami. Pamiętasz ich? Ja tak nie chcę. Już wolę w wierszu uciąć ci głowę jak Judyta Holofernesowi i z nieco teatralną mieszaniną strachu i … Continued

On Childhood

1 My daughter has slid down in the bath so that just the island of her face breaks the surface— and when she holds in her breath her body suspends touching nothing I say can you hear me and she … Continued

On Aesthetics

  Here the boy is fifteen when his father’s friend Paul— six foot six and seething because his saxophone career ended twenty-five years ago and, ever since, he’s taught middle school—calls the boy a little prick, a little piece of … Continued