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Reckoner


Since we uploaded into the cloud
the earth misses us
It hasn’t rained for months

The sleek new skins of our hand-
held devices flash
like the blank face of the lake

We go down to it and bathe 
in its shades: gin clear   fluorescent grey


::


Sometimes we float 
bumping along shoulder to shoulder

in a simulacrum of friendship
in the blue

Is that you?

Seen and unseen

like a Ghost Man on second
like an underage labor camp

If we’re not in it
where are we?


::


All our campfire girls
All our drowned fuselages and kelped wrecks
All our pine pollen soft parades

Our mouthfuls and gulped breaths
How many gigabytes is that?


::


Sometimes we float in it almost
bodiless lost in the flickering 
voices that will never save us

even with all that
value added


::


The touchscreen technician 
who assembled and wiped 
to a delicate sheen 
our smartbook faceplate

Her little hands are ruined 
by the solvents
by the rhythms

so we can share 
with smudgeless clarity


::


Like little cones 
raining from the pines

teenaged girls drop from factory eaves

Circles touching circles
spreading across faces

Yours   mine   theirs

We take and we take and we tag


::


On the lakeshore a mother mallard 
nestles into needles to make her 
home above rocks

where a boy with a stick 
is sure to find her

Where is your warm hand 
for my hand?    

Posted 05/09/14
This poem originally appeared in Blackbird (vol.13, no.1).
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