When exposed to water you hunted down my mirror self and stripped it clean
-still in liquid form but heat to vapor
Breath held hostage you stood too close
Inside. Adam’s ribs rose and fell, beauty sleeping after wakeful carnage
but my breath held hostage by yours or have you forgotten?
You place your finger as tab, pin down my pages
my skin is parchment
You skip the part where i was born
as summons to war (it is not war)
Born of the first Adam, of fitful sleep and waking damage
The second raised me
Most parts water swirling cognac
Is there blood enough yet?
Will you wipe this clean?
No. And yet you are gentle.
Held breath hostage you cry sorry
Please.You knew the landscape
Bring the girl in for sport
[she] cries a wolf but is captured a deer~
in his dreams, strange hybrid
it all turns to water
Underneath. Am i swimming or am i sea?
Adam is sleeping on the couch.
You run your fingers through my hair.
Adam is turning.
You are closer and blood heavy.
Adam is waking.
You place a halo on my head.
You place a crown and call me holy.
This is not love.
Your red hair is Troy burning.
On the beach where the girl had taken her first steps returned to white sand,
Sand on fire, girl on toes edging to sea and foam
The earth yields up her treasures for the seeking and sea swallows
Looks over her shoulder, wind feeds hair
“Come with me, come to the salted sea”
Glass in her eye,
Toes sinking in crushed shells, on tiny homes and tar beans washed up
black pebbles washed up, squashed
The romance of childhood knows refineries, knows black gold
~will know lumps in breasts, wilting lungs and missing neighbors
Black tar creeping into homes~
But now sand on fire, sand turning glass, giving up treasure
Green pebbles, blue some ambers
Salted, shaped smooth cool glass
Not sticky sweet
Edges to water, knees sinking at the cusp
at water’s edge
Soft sand, the burning yields to warmth,
Sun beating as she yields her neck,
Walks to water
Horizon line, girl marring
color block scene:
white, blue, sun-faded blue
Girl yields to water, to first womb returns
The true daughter,
Dark hair coiling wet snake down her back
balm to skin on fire
skin yielding copper
Dark hair sun strips to copper
Sun beats stirring wind
unhurried waves, quartz blows over
Girl meets water meets sky
And mercy reigns
mercy, mercy, mercy
Two twisters danced at the edge of the frame, her point of view
The low blue sky, sun-faded blue
Expanse, horizon and sand
Blue swing set, monkey bars, slide
Desert, the great oppressor
sometime liberator too
as teacher too
The sun, also oppressor
The sun, also teacher
this time beating skin,
this time biting small ears
this time twisting wind in funnels
The child, empath
Alone, always alone
Listens first but she watched before
She saw too
The failure in the skies
Shaken and rocked, falling skies
and earth shaken
the kingdom of adults shaken too
The shock too, hers absorbed
She is six but knows to stays quiet,
knows to slip outside
Alone, too much and too often
But she is six and elemental
Is a child but won’t grow,
Is not so wise but old
Sun fades away, sky scatters sky
The child not six, much older
knows not how to stay quiet,
knows not how to stay
She squints to remember
Remembers desert sun, beating
remembers burning sand, burning hair
The empath, the elemental
Wants to know, wants;
Weighed and measured and found,
Knows to slip outside,
Knows only this
Knows to slip out
Seek sun, seek searing sun
When on high and mountain top
I found a burning fire
and the fire
But I veiled my heart;
I wear a veil
over the glow
from your heart
The fell tree lays peaceful on a blue sky day and still, gnarled roots exposed once earth enveloped
now silent testament to hammering violence
but no capture of the howling force that laid it waste for mortal ears
Perhaps in naked roots indecorously splayed for careless eyes
remnants of a battle of wills lost; will lost
Scene: Darkness/Night exterior
In the absence of light and bullets of rain banshee songs grew louder, the tree swayed
nature at war and with itself, storied presence of the night before absorbed
in bark and leaf and branches, recorded
The things that are not seen are not remembered
But I grieved for the spectacle of a solitary fell tree at the side of the road
evidence of the lonely aeon advancing ceaselessly
(hummingbird years come and go ad infinitum), battering wind
Will there be mercy for those who bend but do not break?
Voiceover: I set my face as flint
Is there grace for those who hope; is there grace for the waiting?
Is this frequency captured in earth or stone or cloud?
Your roots, fell tree, your roots.
There was a thought there, teasing in suspension ‘All lights on’ and it made bright the inner sanctum and it was you;
You lit me up on MRI when speech captured showed radiographic evidence of the expansive ache a long journey calls the place it would return to in psychedelic color
(regardless of longitudes) and divisions multiplied in dizzying measure
You understand the harmonies of stars so know also that I looked out until light caught up to find you and there you were and here you are
He is not a heretic (has no passion for it or conviction). Simply trades the quiet for turmoil and rougher textures, course on fingertips; likes a sting.
Seeks the woman who douses herself in intoxicants so he can sniff out her cognac skin.
He, a man who puts out the wrong fires.
She is safe in the belly of impatience and will not spell out ‘ardor’ until laughter catches up to passion. Her hands are reverent and will not profane certain pages. His inadequate education in matters of the divine keep him ignorant of true fire and he cannot find its source. She is neither archivist nor priestess but knows to read hearts as sacred scrolls and their secrets the only important text of any century.
Gustav (of the emerald eyes) remarks on the glut of younger aristocracy and how the summer nights in Knightsbridge have thunder and precision engineering but no romance. When she listens to the animated ramblings of this too-handsome young man she fixes her gaze on his forehead and wears a slight frown. He thinks her adequate company and remarks that her eyes are a murky green on slow days and whiskey-flecked brown on the best. She smiles wanly and asks him what he means. He shrugs and continues to recount in detail the escapades of the night before. She concentrates on a stray eyelash on his left cheek and peers swamp-faced and dour at the prospect of the impending and necessary evil. Gustav is in love. He is in love and at any moment in the next ten minutes Dahlia will face the excruciating torment of spending an entire afternoon with the sole obstacle to her happiness.
When you were undone you buried your arms elbow deep in the dirt of your fathers. Red dirt. Dry stone to crack and powder brittle underneath until stone and old bones meet. A boy trying to reach them; a man reaching back to those who carried him and hoped for better. He listens for voices as the rogue moon calls time on his meditation. His throat tightens up and he chokes back a memory brought to life by the low rumbling of generators, the flicker of candles and the smell of a lit match. Brought back to the present by the smell of earth lifted by a breeze to a wayward moon hanging overhead in silvered sky. Still it is the whispers on a quiet evening that are loudest. His fingers in the bowels of his people’s lost kingdom as he lies there in strange embrace, face down.
On page 51 summer does a pirouette, sashays across the ink and leaves (this is where you come in)
let’s assume for a moment that we are back in your kitchen and time is a roundabout and we cannot take the next exit or the next or—
Time is in loops, time is fucking around and has no edges
nothing to grab hold. I’m not one for denying the obvious but you had a certain flamboyance that was charming more often than it was irritating and that’s what keeps you on page 3,789 despite the story’s arc. I am nonsensical and you are never carried away by emotion or depth of feeling. You are carried by your own force of will and never swept. You move.
As one who waits I have come to know it is the storyteller that owns the hours
just rentspace for me, i don’t need granite worktops or marble floors or things to hold
The words will keep for when the fire comes and they’ll stay to keep my daughters company and theirs too
As one who knows something about waiting I’d rather write about your elbow and a quiet corner of the library and how you eat a sandwich
squander time in units of sun and measure heat in hours, we
could while away days of summer on a beach somewhere far from here or find a welcoming hill, i would much rather write about August and hold your knees