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worshipper

I am deeply full of simple things;
of anticipations and doubts and light brushes with the universe.
Like the painted buntings ruffling the goat weed-
now poised above it, now diving beneath it-
I do not wish you to attend to me.

Soon I will walk in two-thousand-year-old cities
and I will be like a single cobblestone, or a half of one.
Two-thousand years of feet will flow over me,
and I will not be crumbled by time’s trampling,
but I will hold out my hand for the marks.

I will walk in great shadows and not shake,
for it is good that they be large and I be small.
On mountains that will outlive me, I will be a single fern;
curling and unfurling once, twice, and then no more.
I will only be a worshipper.

dwarfed

final frontier

if it was eternal night
and small humming noises were suspended around us like
comatose breathers,
and if, in the flaring light, you striped the hallways with your pacing,

breathe in, remember,
breathe out, forget,

there in the sterile corridors I would touch you gently;
if we were warping wanderers, I would try to ease the fading.

enterprise corridors

 

anchor

Secure me in the harrowed stateliness of cliffs
slung in the path of shouting seas.
Lash my rope to the indignities of love
won slowly, carved from void and vice.
Compass me around with golden leaves
falling at sunset, sunset falling.
Harbour me in earth-deep beauty-
four seasons for four loves.
Reassure me with patterns of life;
and in the comforts and vistas of flourishing,
watch the river of existence erode me.

I am a fire-forged ship and my sides crack
like bones against the force of alteration.
My decks shake until they turn to salt.
It cannot hold me, the glowing world.
Dip my anchor into the earth’s throbbing core,
fling it to the edges of the widened universe-
there is no depth or width can fasten me.

The tide and the years fray my rope, untie my Gordian securities.

But cast my anchor up, out of sight,
and my pitching sides go still, my shaking decks
straighten like balanced scales; I fasten myself to the only constant:
Only the anchor caught in heaven can hold me.

//”For I, the Lord, do not change; therefore you, O sons of Jacob, are not consumed.” Malachi 3:6

anchor flip

alan

A volcano lives inside you,
constantly burbling and hissing,
and sometimes it erupts-
a noisy announcement
of shouts goes spraying,
ignoring the walls like air.

Did you trap a bird inside you?
A tropical bird like a squawking
church hat; I hear it rustling
around and screaming for
fruit or insects or whatever
it eats. It clicks its beak.

There’s a bulldozer inside you,
scraping your tongue smooth
as you crawl on your knees
in a white tile work zone.
Tire treads comb you from
the inside; I hear them grind.

Half the world’s inside you,
and another half of who knows
what; they fill the house and
subdue it with tidal volume.
And what I want to know is:
will they drown you?

Someday past 6 you will
sit in a quiet place feeling
inside of you, sorting soul drawers.
You will find the volcano,
the bird, the bulldozer and
decide. Until then, boy, amplify.

alan + caleb

caroline

She
is an artist
spilling
milk
in drips
and connecting
wet white
dots
She gravely
arranges her
grapes
just so
Can
I ask her
to hurry when
she is composing?
I too am an
artist
so I
should know
you cannot soon
eat your own
beauty;
no

caroline

steward

Remind me not to squint into the wind
and the rain like jazz music
syncopated,
slow;
remind me not to walk bowed
with my head down,
curled under like a fern at the touch, but

(if the saxophone wind blows lazed and piercing)

because of the way a brown hawk rises
on elevator music,
remind me to unfold.

fly a kite

absent

Under the fresh-combed sky
She kicks past curiosity
Between her empty hands
Doubt becomes diseased.
Breeze confronts the breeze.

Absence of needing
Absence of want
Knots every fantasy
Twists every plot
She looks through the keyhole
Stands on the cusp
Every sign is
Ubiquitous.

Under the mouth-washed sky
Oh, her heartstrings pull her
Between the traps of knowledge
Like a puppet in a theatre
Birds circle above her.

Under the starstruck sky
Cities manufacture fog
Between the coffee shops and bars
Smokers dialogue
Nothing’s ever wrong.

Absence of later
Absence of now
Never lost and
Never found
Adamant billboards
Sing adequate songs
Here are the answers
To keep her calm.

Absence of needing
Absence of want
Under the fallen sky
Absence of plot.

focus?

midnight is exactly that

Midnight is exactly that
a certain balance of darkness
gone into darkness
hanging on scales
and as the attaining of the middle, the fulcrum,
so are your days and mine:

hard to hold

Contribute your perspicuity
despite the lulling shade of the palm trees,
loose your voracious intelligence and pry something free
from this curse of apathy

Tomorrow will see us all dying
every day closer to dying
has there ever been a day with no dying?

Soft shoes pound with your weight in them
on a hard stage you dance in them
is it by memory or in passion that you
dance and lean the audience toward you?
old women and young boys sit mesmerised
but is it by memory or in passion that you
capture applause from the world?
the ember sky forms kinks and curls
like an old water hose
your professor knows

On hard stage, grass stage, third stage
your performance erupts
into kindness and rage

In a full house, tell me in what part of the house
would you like to sit with me?
on twin bar stools or the ragged couch
or upstairs on beanbag chairs like anemones?
take off your shoes and tell me
has there ever been a day with no dying?

new mexico

out of the sea

voices come to you out of the sea
out of the muscular water and the heaving whale road
and entitle you to growth
the salt rolls in as saviour
and for you, the reassuring waves define new freedom
instead of gasping questions, they will drown you in answers
answers like seaweed- proliferous and soft
they will twine around your legs
caress your sunburned arms
you will never be burned by the sun again
you will never be burned in the sea
but the cold moon opens one rayless eye
and she yanks them away, the water voices
like recalcitrant kittens she pulls them down the shore
and slips them under the tide blanket
I can smell the questions heavy on your breath
a breeze from the forest inside you
you ask me what the end will bring
and I turn slowly
“There will be no more sea.”

time station

observatory

These eaves have hung above me
in the freezing winter rain
in the rain and the groaning heat of August.
They have watched me shiver in a borrowed jacket
saturated with cologne and cold air
They have seen me stretch sweaty legs after a morning run
wearing shorts in the spiderweb sunrise
Weather makes the rounds and I have been thoroughly seasoned
Waiting for the elements to choose my clothes
Watching the changing skies.

These eaves and I are constants
Wind-blown and watching.

forest

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