for dzhan in honor
of the birth of her son
“We stopped in our tracks and carved.”
Outside, white. Quiet man painted pale pink
blossoms in, explained spaces he
needed to leave for flowers,
for stems that they not cross each other.
I will give myself this new day.
And in this new love there was an angel, & a lake-sentinel.
The bright northern globe made us all go
crazy, as I recall, in that one piece of theater.
Bamboo incense is a symbol
of humility; humble means “empty
Yesterday all the universe
was in alignment. I’ve only had two
seriously close encounters with a hummingbird.
Three times has day dispelled the blackness of night since your body
dazzled, you yourself wanted to behold again the light of day.
Terrible project, left with so little inner light, wounded by a strange love.
Legacy. Sensory memory. The efforts we make. How we help each other to survive.
The efforts we make.
The families we form.
What is at stake.
The strange interiors of the shapes in the bright.
Don’t look there look forward. (The way harking back has us move forward.)
The ache and nausea. How I wanted,
How I dreamed.
Then the freeing cigarette, the hat that kept blowing off that I finally left in a taxi.
Different face-flying-past stories. Out of such quietude squares are coming out of your fingers. Like the spaces between words on a page are blooming out, and ringing around.
The cinders of the world.
You should have seen her smile.
It broke darkness in two.
The season hesitates
And something confuses the clock hands.
I wanted to touch her,
But these were the hours of argument.
What is she made of?
Who does she belong to?
Hours of proof—the body is no more
Than wood or leaf or stone.
Art is the axe.
The Emersonian eyeball.
My mother’s green thumb.
The repressed, violent side of the self.
My mother’s grapes, hanging in the drycracked oatweed august sun.
The angel of the house. The monster of the house.
“always keep a bibliography.”
Van Gogh wrote in a letter to his brother that his reason had half-foundered.
The refrain: the prison you live in is of your own devising.
Her blue china set.
Fact of what is imagined, what is suspected, and the doubt that nestles in the body regardless.
5pm honey sunlight backlights the leaves.
I thought them soaked in something besides light.
Bleak and mottled, I thought them soaked in dread.
This is what I want to tell you, mama: spring returned, and with it, language.
A sentence always an environment: a thought, always a world. All 9 lbs of him.
It’s never new knowledge, it’s a return to the knowledge from which you’ve blinded yourself.
The leaves are backed by something rich. The family is a family of light gradient. There you stand. There you bear. There you stare ahead without shame. So you are met, full and without argument, with flow, the oldest of rivers, to teach, to know, to stare keenly into a sharp and endless landscape. So you lock your gaze beyond, so we follow, so we honor you.