From the start
If I can’t be blameless, let me be superior
in my mistakes. If I can’t be singular
in purpose, let me be quietly adrift.
Make me adored and clothed in pine cones.
Make me treed. Let me eat by recipe,
love by touch. Let me direct the forest fire
so it misses the front porch completely.
Give me a way to see past Thursday.
Give me a fishing pole and a tambourine.
If I can’t be beautiful, let me be quick.
Show me where the deer wander
when the bats come out. Give me
an owl in the tent at midnight,
a crow in the basement at dawn.
Let me sing on the roof when
the planes depart. Let the planes carry
my song to the water. If I can’t be downtown,
give me a museum. Give me a still life
with lemons and a dead bird.
Give me a Cornell box and a rare photograph
of a Parisian street before the war.
Find me a docent with a story to tell.
A forgery replaced by a fake
replaced by the real thing.
Let me lie down with a guitar
and a bird cage. Make me green
and well considered. If I can’t be
unraveled, let me be tucked in.