Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Wednesday Pickup of My Truth

My truth is that I know nothing.

One day I will return to chlorophyll
and it’s easy for me to face this
while I still remember my own name,
can write these words with my hand
on this piece of paper that was once a tree.

The body of the Marquis de Sade
became a tree after he died.
His request was to be buried
with acorns, and their little
green horns nosed
into his flesh,

To be greening!
Or green!
A fresh lawn!
An oak!

To dream of joining the chorus
of twig, bark and root,
the mysticism of up, up, up.

Maybe you know everything then,
have all the answers but can’t speak,
how poetic, forced to watch others
make mistake after lonely mistake
in their crosswords and delegations,
negotiations lost.

You unfurl your tiny green flags
and they wave. You change
them all to red, a warning,
and finally just give up, your truth
on the ground for others
to rake up into piles, thrust
into paper bags and park
at the curb for Wednesday pickup.

Your heart is a nest of squirrels.
Birds mate in your brain
and then there are more birds,
and don’t cardinals carry the souls
of the dead?

I know nothing,
but can speak,
It feels dangerous,
to be alive.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017


A hand other than your own
covers your mouth.

You think about the haphazard way
that prayer works, miracles,

The obvious choice
is to stay put. Don’t move.

There is no form for this —
you ought to know it by now,
instinct, the body’s language,
a total no-brainer. Not some
second grade teacher’s 5-7-5
relief during the poetry unit,
an easy formulaic response
to growls of cherry blossoms.

Oh no. This is full-on, redoubled,
wheeling epic free verse —fever dream,
old-bones- rocked-to-sleep-on-a-razor’s-edge-can-of-soup-

A ship is pulled underwater in your chest.
Cows graze in your head.
Your feet have no imagination.

You should know this one.
Don’t speak. Leave it blank.
There’s your control.

You stand up. You raise your hand,
fail the test over and over again.

The obvious choice
is to stay put. Don’t move.

A hand other than your own
covers your mouth.

You host the barbarian,
you are incendiary,
you are the reason
we have no way
to grade this.