No Ark

Implicit in every word
Is the danger of being heard, as
On a sunlit afternoon
The rain ruined against
Her brow, and how she
Pronounces the coming wet
Might yield a gentler storm;
When all is flood,
How the arc gets named
Might defer a differing frame.
So tonight, she speaks
Of revelations, and I turn
To watch it in the clouds:
Implicit in every bird
Is the stranger being heard.

We Are The Hydra

1.

We are to the brim with aches from teeth long shaken out on green apples and poised fists. Our teeth had left us toothless; we spat stones for each temptation, hands the manifestation of longing: two insects fluttering in search of a mating home.

2.

We are to the brim with blacks and blues remembered from tall dark woods trimmed to a single brilliant stick. Lo! How each generation seeks to define itself by suffering. I am damaged goods, she says, I may learn to love again but not now, not really.

3.

We are to the brim with wanting triggers emblazoned onto skin. For each tattooed minute we had lost a fighting head and thus gained a double conundrum. This is no way to live. This is no way to sing. The jagged son of Jupiter rises at our throats.

4.

Or none at all.

The Ground Shakes

On the balcony across from where I am reclined, a young couple speaks to one another on a checkered couch. The man’s lips move with energetic discussion, the woman’s arms paint the gesture of a vase or the shape of some sensual curve. Their sliding door is open and I can hear the faintest afterthought from the record player in their living room. But even as the distant voices from down the street are carried to me, I cannot hear this couple just a balcony away. They speak in pantomime. Their outlines blur in the sunlight, and now they glimmer. This could be a scene from one of infinite dimensions: a perfect world where a young couple speaks to one another on a checkered couch, oblivious and silent to the other world watching just a balcony away.

* * *

This post might conceivably remind one of a similar scene(s) written a year or many years ago. I might conceivably agree.

Scenes of Rapture Along Yosemite’s Half Dome Trail

The rain expands everything, gets into every corner, soaks every fiber: our bags, our clothes, our hearts. And there is water in the tent. A puddle has formed in the indentation over our heads; my friend rumbles beside me, punches at it and suddenly I am wet, awake.

* * *

Memory is an abiding boulder. The details fuzz and the spaces fill with trivial green things. Still, in these nights, I am haunted by that monolithic image, the one of hikers rounding up a steep stone staircase in the dead of dark, headlamped and flashlit. A hundred human fireflies twinkling into the thorn crowned forest.

There are ways to worship. There are ways to worship: the roar of waterfalls, omnipotent and omnipresent.

* * *

It is possible, as all things are possible.

* * *

Years from now, can you say, in this dream we were not afraid. Only angels along the way as we climbed, hand over hand, up the line that led us to heaven. Oh but I am godless. Oh but I am without fear. Oh but tomorrow resurrects itself, day after day after day.

Questions to Answers

So goes the month, “I’ve run out of things to say. My mouth moves, makes no sound.”

* * *

60 feet below, frozen and floating through the kelp forests off Point Loma, I am searching for ghosts in a green yellow sky; the shapes of boats overhead condense and coalesce, threats of shadow, maybe rain. The body heaves, entangled by currents. Then, my dive buddy swims to me and gestures there with his hand. A school of fish like a flock of birds, a rapture of souls. If my mouth were to open now, would the whole ocean rush in, fill the cavity with salt and wrecks.

* * *

“Since then, all sunrises have been viewed as if standing at the mouth of a cave bound by high tide.”

“Thus we only need to ascertain when ‘then’ arrived.”

* * *

Dear O.,

If your cat could talk, what would it say. I think I am happy, sometimes. Yesterday more so than today. Tomorrow more so than yesterday. I feel like I am getting somewhere, that this time next year, I will have arrived. What would it say: don’t be sad for what’s been left behind.

Sincerely,
C.

* * *

You can’t have contemplation
Without some contempt,

Like this:

In the middle of the night
There is an awakening

The body
Covered with strange dreams,
Skin ablaze;

Do you rise and
Cool yourself by the sea

Or

Beside the sudden hedge
Of darkness,

Do you watch
The ash from your cigarette
Fall on a web, small
And jewel boxed,

The clockwork spider
Struggling to wrap its silk
Around the divine

To make
A tasteless meal
My mouth is never rid.

When Parch Meant Thirst

in these hills
the awakened divine
rouse to chorus

not so unkind
that you cannot lift your legs
and move on

sallied forth to each corner coroner
by every winter wind
unwound beneath the unfurled

to the memory of last night

drunk and standing in front
of a dark, empty house
weighted by bags
and the rain;

if we are alive,
if fortunes are divulged
on tiny scraps of paper
found within a twisted
cookie:

“today, you will find something you have been looking for”

an implication
that something may have been lost
an implication
that something may have been desired

what does it matter now
if the world is bipolar,
we inhabit the same fault lines
torn by north and a south

only this —

what is remarkable
after nights of clouds
is the moon overhead,
a verging birth

Hounded

Two dirty shingles over a bending blade, this
House reaches through time and space
Learns to cut again; and it cuts, such divisiveness,
Decisively deceptive
Like the lilt of listing laments, the litany of longing
To be cataloged by librarians,
And spoken: your friend is dying,
Your friend is full of inconsistencies…
And more than once, the uncertain narrator pauses,
Breath taken by a sentence that spans a year,
A home to be remembered, brandished, where
Everything changed, sharper than life itself.
In these times, he wonders when joy devised to be
So fleeting; so he says it, the heart
Can be a poem too, composed of fragments
And so hard.