Tuesday, July 27, 2010


Pasta's on the boil; time for a poem. I got two last night/this morning, thanks to the full moon. There was some dispute over when the full moon happened this month; different people's calendars said different things, which does happen sometimes but seemed to happen more this month. One astrologer said this indicated that you needed to think about where you are and where you want to be and when you feel the moon is full. Relative.

Anyway, got two and one is structured and meaningful in a larger way, I hope, and the other is rambling and self-indulgent, so of course I'll share the latter.

"Aspiration and Literature"

The shaman shakes his rattle
At the base of the monolith,
Releasing the directions, and my own
Ritual begins. Each breath a struggle
To transform poison into magic. The lead
Filtered out of the water I sip
From a plastic cup. The stink
Of the river after a punishing rain.
The squish of the grainy mud, held in place
By invasive weeds on this patchy lawn
Beneath the sinking monuments. The snake
Crushed beneath the horse's hoof. The face
You say you see in the soot on the plinth.
The chemtrails lit orange in the sunset.
The homeless man walking out of the pit toilet
Under the bridge. The swarm of gnats
Over the pool, in the last gleaming. The radio keening
And thumping from the open car window, the car waiting,
Smoking. And when we're alone, I might just tip her.
She slides down the pole like a certified stripper.

My own keening. My own thumping. My own ecstasy. The night-approaching
Wind on your skin. The skin below your waistband.
My hands remembering the feel of your skin stretched
Over your hips. My own hair trapped in the hair
Of your chest. Every lie that has brought me here.
Every cruelty, every snap of rage, every loss,
Yours and mine and theirs and every death
We don't yet know. The god of art and games and song,
Bedecked with flowers, stone, still, at the center of it all.

Pasta is mush. Maybe I can still work with it. No wonder Plath was always in such a bad mood. She kept trying to cook and write at the same time.

Photo: "Aspiration and Literature" statue by Fraser, photo by M.V. Jantzen, Creative Commons.

1 comment:

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