delga: ([2046] love is not love.)

The Chariot in Love
by Marty McConnell

there is a red box in my bedroom
for the disposal of needles.
there is a woman in my bed

with a body made of flowers.
they feel like thorns to her,
like weeds. part of me thinks

she is dying. another part says no,
that’s how we sleep now.

the hormones are new

but the story is old: Tiresius
was a man, then a woman, then
a man. punishment, prophecy,

redemption. I’ve begun guessing
at the gender of lamp-posts. of couches.
of calendars. watching the jaws of men

on the train, studying their shoulders,
the shrug in their lean. I’ve become
something different now, too. omnipresent

bystander, witness for the defense: the bed
is nothing like a coffin. the animal hair
at the end of her backbone has always

been there
. I watch your body
square into itself and think, armor.
the temperature of your skin in sleep

says fever, flight, release. we leave
the windows open all winter. I am cold
but you are here. I never learn

to push the needle into the meat
of your thigh. does this make me
a coward, or the man in the moon?

You’re extraordinary. Don’t leave.
this spring, my sister ripped out half
a garden of blossomless poppies

because a neighbor told her
anything with thorned stems
and thorned leaves

is a weed. no matter what answer
you give the gods, something
will be granted and something taken

away. I would like someone to teach me
a new way to pray. I miss the sight
of your breasts in sleep. your knees

are the same. I fold photographs
of you as a girl into postcards
and mail them to orphans. you are

your own daughter, they say. everyone
earns their body somehow. what
do we do now?

2.
transform, metamorphose, transmute, transmogrify, convert, transfigure: to change a thing into a different thing. transform implies a major change in form, nature, or function {transformed a small company into a corporate giant}. metamorphose suggests an abrupt or startling change induced by or as if by magic or a supernatural power {awkward girls metamorphosed into swannish ballerinas}. transmute implies transforming into a higher element or thing {transmute lead into gold, body into deity}. transmogrify suggests a strange or preposterous metamorphosis {a story in which a frog is transmogrified into a photograph once thought lost, now reappearing as an ad for feminine hygiene products}. convert implies a change fitting something for a new or different use or function {converted the study into a nursery, the bed into a boarding house}. transfigure implies a change that exalts or glorifies {joy, or maybe it was the hormones, transfigured her face}.

3.
love. may the body you are becoming hold fewer
cruel boundaries. may its territories admit my hands,
hormones taking down fences like boys in cars
with baseball bats swinging at mailboxes.

dear mystery, dear mythological
shapeshifter, may I adore you
in any skin, inherited or built.
there is a hair below your chin

that I love to study. it is like
a small flag invented by an army
wildly outnumbered but with the very
best uniforms. their boots punched with holes

but polished to a sheen in which they can see
their gorgeous reflections. God’s perfect
monsters, they stomp through your bloodstream,
set up camp at the base of your spine where I tuck

my knee while sleeping. they are not sure
how to love me. a body untransformed, transfigured only
by time and afternoons at the gym. may you be able
to remind them, I was here first. or at least,

I loved you more.

4.
you are not a war. there is nothing
to be won here. you asked me once

what my ruin is. what could make me
a monster. I didn’t answer. the answer is,

fear. I am that ordinary. I was born
like this. but I have invented new ways

to pray. the clock is a liar who dissolves
in the light. the shower is resurrection central.

your mouth is a storehouse of surrogate
bones, you grow fruit trees and crocus

in the back of your throat. give me
your moonshoulders, the stars all over

your body, and the keys. hand over
the map. you choose the road. I can keep

both wheels on the ground, I can hold us.
the book says, remember. victory is just

the beginning.
we’ll make a banner
from your binding shirt, collect my shed hair

for the seams. my love, my sphinx, my vanishing
point, I am not perfect. but I was built for this.

delga: ([merlin] your good & fertile mind.)

What is at the Heart of it is a Voracious Clinging to What is Called Love
by Diane Seuss

I always gripped that thrill, that fuchsia carbonation, swarm of blush-colored
butterflies colonizing the gut, and I believed it meant something beyond

a temporary flush of feeling; it’s what I knew of theatre, of God. I wanted
the play to never end, red curtains permanently drawn back like the lips

around the smile of an actress, dead before her time. I wanted God to never
rise into the air and return transparent and desexualized, resolved in his own

narrative, at peace with himself, because his peace meant I was no longer
necessary. It began early, when I was a girl, wandering the village seeking

Jesus. I loved the mechanics of salvation. Some churches made you squeeze
shut your eyes and raise your hand if you wanted to invite him into your heart,

and I could see the thick oaken door, hear the rusty hinges squeaking open
and Jesus walking into the hot burgundy room, my blood roaring like Niagara

when you walk behind the falls. Other times you were asked to stride to the front
of the church and publicly hand over your life to God, so the congregants could

witness your ecstasy, more intimate than a lover watching your unguarded face
during orgasm because in church there were no sexy conventions to hide behind,

no poses learned in movies or magazines; they would see the raw, unwieldy
moves of a body in the throes of desire without pretense. I can’t for the life of me

remember how I transferred that largesse to a boy as frail as Danny Davis,
whose family lived in a low gray shack on Bertrand Road. When he walked

onto the school bus, so early in the morning the world inside the bus was dark
as the church broom closet, I trembled like a newborn. When he exited at the end

of the day—in winter, the sky having already darkened again, a strip of pale orange
sunset running behind his house like the shabby ribbons we’d tie into our pony’s

mane if we’d had a pony—I’d feel more bereft than I had the day my father died,
as the day my father died I was numb, I needed a template for how to feel, a map

for how to walk, now that he was dead, to my Brownie meeting, or my best friend’s
house, whose toddler brother proclaimed, when I finally made my way through

the door, “Your dad’s dead!” like he was announcing a victory, like I had won
something, a cake, or a beauty pageant. I would like to end there, as what

comes later is adulthood, where thematic iterations throb like pulsars, metrical
as the contractions of an orgasm. What I can’t neglect, though I’d like to, is Sammy’s

Roumanian, a restaurant on Chrystie Street, in the Bowery, on the Lower East
Side of Manhattan, Sammy’s, on the Vernal Equinox in 1979, filled with laughter,

the tinny music from an electric keyboard, and faded red balloons. Sammy’s,
with its small pitcher of chicken fat—schmaltz—throbbing gold at the center

of each table. It’s where and when Kevin and I were to be married, and how
smart we were, to want to stop time when we were at the zenith of our beauty.

I wonder now, had we done it—and I want to bash my head against the wall,
thinking of it—could we have thwarted the rest? How he would die young,

and I—well, here I am, alive, it is so early in the morning all of the windows
on my street are dark, just me here in this house, facing west, where the sun goes

to die, and, all things being equal, the wind is born, and wanders east, and bears
down, and uproots everything that has not been nailed to a wooden cross.

delga: ([Random] full bloom.)

How Love Came to Us
by Eric Evans

Gradually, and working its way slowly, through all things,
beginning even long before we knew each other.
Through emptiness, through aimlessness,
the spirit’s daily wandering in the desert of the familiar,
fed by nights of exhaustion and driven by occasional despair,
by grief, loss compounded upon loss.
Through the patient forbearance of cruelties,
year after year, through folly, through faith and faithlessness,
through half-measures and weakness, through your and my
daily silent supplications and small acts of ordinary magic,
the spontaneous calling out to distant spirits,
each in our separate ways, and for answer the surge of the wind,
the circulation of the sun and the moon,
the churning of the far away oceans
that we each knew and felt in our own blood and breath.
So that when we first saw each other
finally that one July evening at twilight,
it seemed almost as if nothing happened.
A life had already grown up wild around us like a meadow,
was already waiting for us, silent, open.

delga: ([Random] sacrifice is not the river.)

Thirst
by Mary Oliver

Another morning and I wake with thirst
for the goodness I do not have. I walk
out to the pond and all the way God has
given us such beautiful lessons. Oh Lord,
I was never a quick scholar but sulked
and hunched over my books past the hour
and the bell; grant me, in your mercy,
a little more time. Love for the earth
and love for you are having such a long
conversation in my heart. Who knows what
will finally happen or where I will be sent,
yet already I have given a great many things
away, expecting to be told to pack nothing,
except the prayers which, with this thirst,
I am slowly learning.

--

World Poetry Day. The opening lines of this (and much of the rest) have been occupying my grey matter for the past few days.

delga: ([Random] sacrifice is not the river.)

The City
by Constantine P. Cavafy (trans. Daniel Mendelsohn)

You said: "I'll go to some other land, I'll go to some other sea.
There's bound to be another city that's better by far.
My every effort has been ill-fated from the start;
my heart--like something dead--lies buried away;
How long will my mind endure this slow decay?
Wherever I look, wherever I cast my eyes,
I see all round me the black rubble of my life
where I've spent so many ruined and wasted years."

You'll find no new places, you won't find other shores.
The city will follow you. The streets in which you pace
will be the same, you'll haunt the same familiar places,
and inside those same houses you'll grow old.
You'll always end up in this city. Don't bother to hope
for a ship, a route, to take you somewhere else; they don't exist.
Just as you've destroyed your life, here in this
small corner, so you've wasted it through all the world.

With thanks to [livejournal.com profile] the_grynne who posted this today.

delga: ([Random] beating like a hammer.)

The Violence of the Violins
by Paul Hostovsky

It was in them, they would say.
It was what they were, what they
did. It was part of them, carved
into them like an F hole, like
a clef tattooed onto a biceps.
And there was nothing you
could say or do to change that.
It was their way. It was the way
of the world, and also of the sun
exploding a million miles away,
warming your soft cheek. Face
the music, they would say. Stop
listening with your eyes closed.
See the string tightened almost
to breaking, the bow torturing it
into song. Feel the skin stretched
over the drum so tightly it makes
your heart pound. And where
did you think it all came from,
the easy melody, the high tinkling
finery? We are hurt into beauty.
And you, up in the balcony, rising
to your feet, applauding fiercely, look
down at what your own hands are doing.

delga: ([Random] thinly-veiled dissonance.)

Many Are Called
by Mariko Nagai

Underneath this city, there is another city, one more modern, more
recent in its origin. Here, in these dark tunnels where pomegranates
fall, all these thoughts fly around like moths, lured by light, by sweet
smell of decay, trapping themselves by their own free choice in the
confined space of their making: It can’t already be June, it can’t
already be Monday,
that’s what they say, that’s what people keep
muttering to themselves this morning as they cradle the last of the
sleep in their coffee cups, for the precious moments in which they
huddle in themselves before they must sign off their lives to something
they don’t believe in, to something they think they cannot escape
from. As they rock in the rhythm of the train, someone thinks, A moth
in spider’s nest,
though she does not see the intricate weaving of the
thin threads, ready to untangle between our fingers, snapping the
threads. But it’s like this: It’s already June, I’m already 28 and I
haven’t done anything,
many are talking, comforting us in these
minutes of our lives when we descend down to darkness, to darkness
so dark that we are helpless, our bodies swaying left to right, left to
right as if we’re rocking in prayer, but we are not praying. We’re boxed
in the freight, we’re boxed in a subway car, this is the death train, but
unlike
them, forced away from their homes because of blood, we
chose this train, we chose to be on it, we are boxed in, we’re as
helpless,
we tell ourselves, positioning ourselves to the gravity, the
pull of the train. Our highest dreams thrown out like our last night’s
dinner, a woman’s dream flies past, landing silently on the subway
floor like the last note of an aria, I wish someone loved me, I wish He
loved me,
a thought so light it floats quietly down, hovers an inch
or two above the floor, then lands, landing as someone steps on it. I wish
somebody loved me, but I’m not pretty enough, I’m not smart enough,

she closes her thoughts from us, she looks down to the book on her
lap, the thick one, heavy like her sadness, but she doesn’t stop her
reading, the thick book stays where it is, the woman, though, reads so
little, doesn’t really read, just daydreams, her hopes going where
we are going, she stays where she is, on the seat across. We are all
going somewhere we have to each day, pulled by the invisible strings,
and we say, I can go no other place, this is where I belong. No, we go
to places only if we must, but must is a habit, after all, we can go
anywhere as long as we let ourselves, anywhere we want to, only if we
want to, she can stretch her arms as if in flight, and leave, leave this
train, this city…only if she wants to. We think there’s no way out, our
lives guided by some invisible lines only fate has right to hold, right to
control. But we are closer to grace, we are closer to where we were
before we were born, before we forgot the songs, before we forgot the
promises, we are closer to grace in the darkness of our own making,
we are not of time—only if we let it, only if we let the watch unshackle
us, but we forget, as we have forgotten, as soon as we open our eyes.
Many are called and many do not hear.

delga: ([Random] qué?)

Meme responses to questions asked by [livejournal.com profile] belantana!

01. A fight to the death: giraffes or llamas?

I think llamas would win by default. Those are some frisky buggers, whereas giraffes are sort of...serene. The llamas would just go for their knees. I suspect, like myself, giraffes would just try to run away. Like, dude, what are you-- gerroff! GERROFF MEEEEE! And then it's running with a llama impaled on its leg. That is pretty much how I see that going.

Llamas are motherfuckers.

02. One Spooks character you'd've liked to see in the finale? (You can resurrect someone if necessary.)

INTERESTING QUESTION. spoilers for S10 )


03. If you could travel anywhere in the world tomorrow?

I am assuming the rest of this question is would you, and where would it be? I would! And it would probably be Melbourne (because I already have plans to do NYC in 2012 \o/). There places there I have a yen to see, and people I want to see. So. Melbourne.

04. Funniest LJ-related memory?

I-- ???

Actually, no, okay, this doesn't really count, but back when we both had far too much time on our hands and were on livejournal more often, [livejournal.com profile] wliberation and I would just...spiral off into lunacy fuelled by sleeplessness. There are posts somewhere in the archive where there's, like, 100-200 comments of us just going off on one. Good times!

05. I think you post your poem-recs elsewhere to LJ now, so, rec me the latest recworthy poem you've read? If there's a tie - a poem for a rainy Sunday morning.

I have fallen out of the habit of posting here because, yes, I do post daily on tumblr. But, this one is worth posting here today. I queued this one for Thursday (which was Gujarati New Year, hurrah!) because I love Imtiaz Dharker and the mood of her poems so often fits family events. (I'm sure I've posted This Room before, which I think is the bane of GCSE students across the country, but which I adore.)

The Blessing
by Imtiaz Dharker

The skin cracks like a pod.
There never is enough water.

Imagine the drip of it,
the small splash, echo
in a tin mug,
the voice of a kindly god.

Sometimes, the sudden rush
of fortune. The municipal pipe bursts,
silver crashes to the ground
and the flow has found
a roar of tongues. From the huts,
a congregation : every man woman
child for streets around
butts in, with pots,
brass, copper, aluminium,
plastic buckets,
frantic hands,

and naked children
screaming in the liquid sun,
their highlights polished to perfection,
flashing light,
as the blessing sings
over their small bones.

delga: ([spooks] lion-hearted girl.)

The Forgotten Actress as Isadora Duncan in Russia
by Bridget Lowe

The Russians loved you. And for that
you loved them back. It was maternal in a way,
on both sides. A country needing love, a woman
with a hole as big as a country in her chest.
They asked you to dance and how you obliged them!
Each rib bowed in graciousness, each fingertip
stretched toward the ceiling of paper stars
cut by children to light your way across
the stage. When you finished, your black head
of hair falling all forward, falling out, your body long
and starved, they stood and wept
in honor of you. They decorated you with scarves.

delga: ([Random] Atonement.)

The Temple
by Traci Brimhall & Brynn Saito

The spires are lit by a low flame. Behind you,
a chorus of lamentations in the dark.
Approach the temple’s wide gate and begin

praying to the living. Be with the mystery
that cloaked itself in images.
The teeth missing from the saint’s skull

are collected on a string. Wear them close
to your thin body. When last were you beckoned
to the wilderness for a terror to behold

and resist? You could have been anything,
but you have been chosen to walk through the gate
as the world’s only daughter, aglow with solitude

and held up by a lean hope. Remove from your body
the desire for a useful love, and the plague
of angels will no longer haunt you. Only a fool

can tell the king the truth, and you lie to survive,
like everything mysterious. When your right hand
rises to the center of your chest to join the left

you find you have forgotten to kneel.
How can you hope to hear the howling that is God
when nothing around you is on fire?

delga: ([2046] love is not love.)

The Soul Bone
by Susan Wood

Once I said I didn't have a spiritual bone
in my body and meant by that
I didn't want to think of death,
as though any bone in us
could escape it. Maybe
I was afraid of what I couldn't know
for certain, a thud like the slamming
of a coffin lid, as final and inexplicable
as that. What was the soul anyway,
I wondered, but a homonym for loneliness?
Now, in late middle age, or more, I like to imagine it,
the spirit, the soul bone, as though it were hidden
somewhere inside my body, white as a tooth
that falls from a child's mouth, a dove,
the cloud it can fly through. Like bones,
it persists. Little knot of self, stubborn
as wildflowers in a Chilmark field in autumn,
the white ones they call boneset, for healing,
or the others, pearly everlasting.
The rabbis of the Midrash believed in the bone
and called it the luz, just like the Spanish word
for light, the size of a chickpea or an almond,
depending on which rabbi was telling the story,
found, they said, at the top of the spine or the base,
depending. No one's ever seen it, of course,
but sometimes at night I imagine I can feel it,
shining its light through my body, the bone
luminous, glowing in the dark. Sometimes,
if you listen, you might even hear that light
deep inside me, humming its brave little song.

delga: ([Random] call this on my awful luck.)

The Secret of Backs
by Dorianne Laux

Heels of the shoes worn down, each
in its own way, sending signals to the spine.

The back of the knee as it folds and unfolds.
In winter the creases of American-made jeans:
blue denim seams worried to white threads.

And in summer, in spring, beneath the hems
of skirts, Bermudas, old bathing suit elastic,
the pleating and un-pleating of parchment skin.

And the dear, dear rears. Such variety! Such
choice in how to cover or reveal: belts looped high
or slung so low you can’t help but think of plumbers.

And the small of the back: dimpled or taut, spiny or not,
tattooed, butterflied, rosed, winged, whorled. Maybe
still pink from the needle and the ink. And shoulders,

broad or rolled, poking through braids, dreads, frothy
waterfalls of uncut hair, exposed to rain, snow, white
stars of dandruff, unbrushed flecks on a blue-black coat.

And the spiral near the top of the head—
peek of scalp, exquisite galaxy—as if the first breach
swirled each firmament away from that startled center.

Ah, but the best are the bald or the neatly shorn, revealing
the flanged, sun-flared, flamboyant backs of ears: secret
as the undersides of leaves, the flipside of flower petals.

And oh, the oh my nape of the neck. The up-swept oh my
nape of the neck. I could walk behind anyone and fall in love.

Don’t stop. Don’t turn around.

delga: ([fringe] a little faithlessness.)

Vague Memories
by Hu Ming-Xiang

Flames chuckle over
The memory of lost forests
Old men around a fire
Speaking of love.

delga: ([Random] old-fashioned train wreck.)

Summer Solstice
by Stacie Cassarino

I wanted to see where beauty comes from
without you in the world, hauling my heart
across sixty acres of northeast meadow,
my pockets filling with flowers.
Then I remembered,
it’s you I miss in the brightness
and body of every living name:
rattlebox, yarrow, wild vetch.
You are the green wonder of June,
root and quasar, the thirst for salt.
When I finally understand that people fail
at love, what is left but cinquefoil, thistle,
the paper wings of the dragonfly
aeroplaning the soul with a sudden blue hilarity?
If I get the story right, desire is continuous,
equatorial. There is still so much
I want to know: what you believe
can never be removed from us,
what you dreamed on Walnut Street
in the unanswerable dark of your childhood,
learning pleasure on your own.
Tell me our story: are we impetuous,
are we kind to each other, do we surrender
to what the mind cannot think past?
Where is the evidence I will learn
to be good at loving?
The black dog orbits the horseshoe pond
for treefrogs in their plangent emergencies.
There are violet hills,
there is the covenant of duskbirds.
The moon comes over the mountain
like a big peach, and I want to tell you
what I couldn’t say the night we rushed
North, how I love the seriousness of your fingers
and the way you go into yourself,
calling my half-name like a secret.
I stand between taproot and treespire.
Here is the compass rose
to help me live through this.
Here are twelve ways of knowing
what blooms even in the blindness
of such longing. Yellow oxeye,
viper’s bugloss with its set of pink arms
pleading do not forget me.
We hunger for eloquence.
We measure the isopleths.
I am visiting my life with reckless plenitude.
The air is fragrant with tiny strawberries.
Fireflies turn on their electric wills:
an effulgence. Let me come back
whole, let me remember how to touch you
before it is too late.

delga: ([grey's] just trepidation.)

The Watermelon
by Hu Ming-Xiang

All through the Spring it grew
Secretly, staying close to the ground.
Today you carved it open
Ate the red flesh, spat out the seeds.

delga: ([witb] would that be such a bad prospect)

The Lost Hotels of Paris
by Jack Gilbert

The Lord gives everything and charges
by taking it back. What a bargain.
Like being young for a while. We are
allowed to visit hearts of women,
to go into their bodies so we feel
no longer alone. We are permitted
romantic love with it’s bounty and half-life
of two years. It is right to mourn
for the small hotels of Paris that used to be
when we used to be. My mansard looking
down on Notre Dame every morning is gone,
and me listening to the bell at night.
Venice is no more. The best Greek Islands
have drowned in acceleration. But it’s the having
not the keeping that is the treasure.
Ginsberg came to my house one afternoon
and said he was giving up poetry
because it told lies, that language distorts.
I agreed, but asked what we have
that gets it right even that much.
We look up at the stars and they are
not there. We see the memory
of when they were, once upon a time.
And that too is more than enough.

delga: ([who] 12 years & 4 psychiatrists.)

Grace
by Maxine Kumin

Hens have their gravel; gravel sticks
The way it should stick, in the craw.
And stone on stone is tooth
For grinding raw.

And grinding raw, I learn from this
To fill my crop the way I should.
I put down pudding stone
And find it good.

I find it good to line my gut
With tidy octagons of grit.
No loophole and no chink
Make vents in it.

And in it vents no slime or sludge;
No losses sluice, no terrors slough.
God, give me appetite
for stone enough.

delga: ([merlin] distant days.)

Goodbye to the Poetry of Calcium
by James Wright

Dark cypresses--
The world is uneasily happy;
It will all be forgotten.
-- Theodore Storm


Mother of roots, you have not seeded
The tall ashes of loneliness
For me. Therefore,
Now I go.
If I knew the name,
Your name, all trellises of vineyards and old fire
Would quicken to shake terribly my
Earth, mother of spiraling searches, terrible
Fable of calcium, girl. I crept this afternoon
In weeds once more,
Casual, daydreaming you might not strike
Me down. Mother of window sills and journeys,
Hallower of searching hands,
The sight of my blind man makes me want to weep.
Tiller of waves or whatever, woman or man,
Mother of roots or father of diamonds,
Look: I am nothing.
I do not even have ashes to rub into my eyes.

delga: ([torchwood] we call this kidnap.)

Cartographies of Silence
by Adrienne Rich


1.
A conversation begins
with a lie. and each

speaker of the so-called common language feels
the ice-floe split, the drift apart

as if powerless, as if up against
a force of nature

A poem can begin
with a lie. And be torn up.

A conversation has other laws
recharges itself with its own

false energy, Cannot be torn
up. Infiltrates our blood. Repeats itself.

Inscribes with its unreturning stylus
the isolation it denies.

2.
The classical music station
playing hour upon hour in the apartment

the picking up and picking up
and again picking up the telephone

The syllables uttering
the old script over and over

The loneliness of the liar
living in the formal network of the lie

twisting the dials to drown the terror
beneath the unsaid word

3.
The technology of silence
The rituals, etiquette

the blurring of terms
silence not absence

of words or music or even
raw sounds

Silence can be a plan
rigorously executed

the blueprint of a life

It is a presence
it has a history a form

Do not confuse it
with any kind of absence

4.
How calm, how inoffensive these words
begin to seem to me

though begun in grief and anger
Can I break through this film of the abstract

without wounding myself or you
there is enough pain here

This is why the classical of the jazz music station plays?
to give a ground of meaning to our pain?

5.
The silence strips bare:
In Dreyer’s Passion of Joan

Falconetti’s face, hair shorn, a great geography
mutely surveyed by the camera

If there were a poetry where this could happen
not as blank space or as words

stretched like skin over meaningsof a night through which two people
have talked till dawn.

6.
The scream
of an illegitimate voice

It has ceased to hear itself, therefore
it asks itself

How do I exist?

This was the silence I wanted to break in you
I had questions but you would not answer

I had answers but you could not use them
The is useless to you and perhaps to others

7.
It was an old theme even for me:
Language cannot do everything-

chalk it on the walls where the dead poets
lie in their mausoleums

If at the will of the poet the poem
could turn into a thing

a granite flank laid bare, a lifted head
alight with dew

If it could simply look you in the face
with naked eyeballs, not letting you turn

till you, and I who long to make this thing,
were finally clarified together in its stare

8.
No. Let me have this dust,
these pale clouds dourly lingering, these words

moving with ferocious accuracy
like the blind child’s fingers

or the newborn infant’s mouth
violent with hunger

No one can give me, I have long ago
taken this method

whether of bran pouring from the loose-woven sack
or of the bunsen-flame turned low and blue

If from time to time I envy
the pure annunciation to the eye

the visio beatifica
if from time to time I long to turn

like the Eleusinian hierophant
holding up a single ear of grain

for the return to the concrete and everlasting world
what in fact I keep choosing

are these words, these whispers, conversations
from which time after time the truth breaks moist and green.

delga: ([Random] Mrs Dalloway)

Overjoyed
by Ada Limón

What’s the drunk waxwing supposed to do
when all day’s been an orgy of red buds
on the winery’s archway off Gehricke Road
and it’s too far to make it home, too long
to fly, even as the sober crow goes. What’s
the point of passion when the pyracantha
berries keep the blood turned toward
obsess, obsess. Don’t you know those birds
are going to toss themselves to the streets
for some minor song of happiness? And
who can blame them? This life is hard.
And let me be the first to admit, when I
come across some jewel of pleasure, I too want
to squeeze that thing until even its seedy heart
evaporates like ethanol, want to throw my
bird-bones into the brush-fire until,
half-blind, all I can hear is the sound
of wings in the relentlessly delighted air.

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