554 Readings




when grandfather dies, you make him a box
not as voyeur—there is no glass—
but glue on rusted electrical switch

outside you count the number of buttons same
as the number of his children, their children, his wife
you believe the number was 33 so choose the same number of rocks

before delivering the sculpture to Mason cemetery
a blue parakeet will sit beside it—a jewelry blue
you’d little imagine in reddirt windmill town

the bird will land tickling shoulder to arm
before flight towards your grandfather’s shop

you will follow it with your eyes
into purple thistle tree
alighting next to metal ladders

the short man who looks like the circus
drives up dust in the city caged truck

he helps you lean ladder to roof—
where there is nothing but asphalt and field


you wanted to touch all this white paint
wondering how it could be
held in such a small blue can

you reached to touch the closet but
the tall man in the boat hat exhaled
you mustn’t the white is titanium

he drew the chalk
circle around you painting
countertops tables and chairs

he painted the closet white
then finally erased you free


dead at the foot of the door
rests your blue apparition—
bury it in newspaper sound


emeraude what eden between congregation?

paille why titanium in lieu of hay?

spiral becomes bird tourist


what white eye splash of blue?

why does the word but commit violence?

an hourglass is not made of corks

napolean why encryption in wooden box?

mode what melody will it sing?

pensée when thought-flock constellations

ciel what is a box with sky?

Posted 02/14/10
The last section takes the italicized words from Joseph Cornell's Hotel Eden.
Books by Deborah Poe
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