Tuesday, February 26, 2013

There Is Salt

There is salt between us.
Spring’s incense burns in wicks of fresh-cut grass
as you snap a cracker in two and hand me half and I eat
greedily, as if it were a piece of lamb

and I a soldier, starved and far from Ithaca,
or Esau, strong chin dripping with red sauce. 

Ask Me How

Ask me how I am doing. I am a plastic tarp
in a wheat field in autumn.
I have tried to change my name
many times. Tell me it is no use worrying.
Your hair changes in the sun.
Behind the skin of your brown face
is bone and blood and bone.

You Are a House

You are a house
and I don’t know what I am but your door was open.
The floorboards creak a little but they look rich,
like real wood, which I didn’t know anyone still sold,
what with deforestation and other crisises
like global warming, or is it crises, anyway in here
the air breathes fresh and cool, like a breeze on a rock
at the edge of a battered shore
or the wind between trees.

I Saw The Snow

I saw the snow fall gently on your crown
and your dusted lips in a royal’s modest smile,
half-hidden from me, turned toward the west,
where the sun busied himself behind cloud

and I could hardly contain myself,
I could harldy keep from
slamming my bony body into your frame covered
with sweetness and flesh, which I would have had not

our friends been walking just a step behind,
surrounding us, their whispering imaginations
like the humming of secret security cameras
peeking from pines, so instead I trembled

with desperation and expectation and something
like delight, and I guess
the corner of your eye mistook my shivering
for cold, because you gave me your jacket,

baring the long coolness of your neck,
and I trembled
and trembled, and the birds flew passionately
to warm their wings as we stomped our feet

and laughed at our own reddening noses.
And you stood among us
like a terrifying tree, and I wanted to throw my arms
around the trunk of you—

I Tried to Shake My Glory Off

I tried to shake my glory off;
the weight of it began to sag,
to hang on my eyelids and shoulders like age
or an uncomfortable thought.
I soaked myself in colored liquids
and warm bodies. I fell
in love and out of airplanes. I tried
hard to let the sharp wind and the speed
of it all tear it from me—

But here, full of new memories
passing already like dreams at dawn
from the suddenness of me standing barren
and fearfully unalone, I am.

Have Mercy On Me Here Hiding

Have mercy on me here
hiding between windows wide as open mouths
in a room filled with humidity and the scattered drums
of rain, its echoes and its speeches. And a train
bellows like a wandering cow.
I am in love
with nothing; I melt into the sounds;
sounds melt into desire; I am not home
yet, or in heavenly arms. These wide water-
proof walls cannot hide me. May your mercy 
find me quickly and fill me with kindness
in kisses
or fire.