Category Archives: New Writing

Love and Sleep

Love and Sleep

We lay here on the edge with a handful
of words not knowing when it will come

upon us and knowing when it comes
(the words will be left to stand guard)

it will be without knowledge
of us and without us knowing it has come

then the skidding slippery acceleration
then the slow wholeness of a moon passing overhead

*

most of our memories congregate here on its borders
but are not allowed inside we remember

gaining it we remember losing it
rubbing our eyes with the shock of its absence

we lay here not wanting to forget a thing
but to enter it is to forget

the weight of everything else

*

we wonder sometimes what really happened

when we were there and the answer is always
much more than that happened

the loss of context that puts all into context
the details of our days all birds and sand

I have given up trying to remember anything
more detailed than that wing of a smile

but even when we know we will never lose each other
we cannot stop the alarm it is in another world after all

so here on the edge we gather with our words
the words listen for us and try to remember

while we’re gone and to hum the song
we were singing once we’re gone

The Switch

The Switch

–then everything else which turns off at night
is the switch that turns on the crickets

is there a thing at all in cricketsong
that means I remember

that bridges the slow heaving wave
of frozen ground between years

is there anything
by which they know they go on

do they need to when they hear
with their legs by which they leap only forward

and sing with their wings which cannot take them backward
what else must a cricket do to prove it needs

no memory

*

behind my house at night I forget
I am in a city the song is so loud

like the earth breathing in and out
the owl marking his territory in the pitch dark

is absorbed into the song it seems impossible
there could be as many crickets on the ground

as there are cricket voices in the air
till the sun climbs over a rock and shuts them off

in the morning which is the switch
for ten thousand starlings to fill the space

with another season–

Looking Backward Across an Early September Day

Looking Backward Across an Early September Day

Geese evacuate beneath the moon’s thin retraction
Trees are whispering their new addresses to each other

and now the houses breathe without coughing
I shrug free and share the sigh of open windows

In the blue morning the sky’s a cut-out
key unlocking summer’s heavy stockade

When the world was upside down
you fell into my arms and I woke

Driving Through A Small Town Full of Churches on a Friday Around Dusk

Driving Through A Small Town Full of Churches on a Friday Around Dusk

 

The buildings vibrate like an old color
postcard whose message has faded

time lifting the letters off the back
one dark bit after the other

which now gather wordless on the horizon
rising without a message to take back

the sky which for a moment shows red
through the church steeples with no bells

Small Song

Small Song 

A late August night, a day after my father’s eighty-third birthday.
High in the walnut trees the cicadas make a sound that can’t be spelled.

It is there like a leak in the sky, behind the tall walnut trees.

It is the air being let out of the summer.