The story so far, told
in degrees of uncompanioning:
once again the mise en scene is winter
and paths that once seemed long
shrink to a point, to a hole through deep snow
calculated as a nail. There is still time
to sort through the remaining propositions:
lose the idea of shelter.
has already happened.
Things like that.
I know a woman --
-- wait, stop, doesn't that remind you
of your most secret dream
-- well, yes, of course,
there is a hermeneutic of every fragment
even diphthongs, particles of lament,
but I must remind you it is winter
and the ambiguous murmuring bushes
have shed everything but
advocate and wood
so that what remains is whip and hiss
Neither nostalgia for a face
of waters, nor longing
for a street of water
the prayer of mirrors.
-- Wait, wait ! Your desire for propositional clarity is understandable,
there are tasks indigenous to every stage of life,
spring cleaning and picnics, Martha and Mary,
but don't you see that the face you must seek
is the antenatal one ?
-- What are you saying, then ?
That everything's just a bloody afterbirth ?
That we're orphans,
suckled by machines,
subsisting on bar codes and zip codes,
mothered by comic simulacra
and rusting ironies ?
Questions fail, fall,
in cascades of pink feathers,
then rise again like arms
that reach toward a kiss --
and subtle as a ray.