Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Evening Soap

She wasn't even pregnant when she bore

Her brother's child (step-only, thus genteel).
What she had concealed, though, never was made clear.
She named him Topsy, he the ickle heir
To Gallantyme, the biggest ranch around.
(They hired their own weatherman and sent
Over to Ft. Lupino for their boots.)
Paterfamilias, he pitched a fit
And sent her out into a thunderstorm,
Where Little Escobar saved her and hers
And made them warm in simple peasant ways.
It took three days to track them to his hut.
Never was quite the same, some people said,
What with his herky-jerky gait. Not once
Did she look at PF. He took to drink
And fisticuffs. And that was the premiere.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Not Dissimilar to a Speeding Bullet

At high speed, celerity like forked swifts,
Fast tracked, and scarcely time for banks and breath,
The world does business, busier than you,
Though you can’t find your hat, your heart, your socks
Gone walkabout; and all the bees are bright,
Even as summer hollers like a kid.
Be not afraid.  There’s nothing you can do.
The shadows swarm with life lived off the books,
And you all in the red.  These are attacks,
Happily falling like a falling star.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Tomorrow in a While

Tomorrow, or tomorrow in a while,

After you lay down secateurs and pause
To watch the housebirds swoop, and when you smile,
Thinking of what a wilderness it was,
This little eden, when the warmth of order
Makes of fatigue a friend, when you install
A sense of fence along the gravel border,
Carving out here and here and here from all,

Remember that it was not always so.
Change uproots comfort, stains, then shatters, glass,
Packs up a house in boxes, hands to weeds
Their lasting triumph. All disaster needs
For flowers to be overcome by grass
Is one small crack through which the wild can grow.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

The Vulgar from the Streets

for HC


Such hieroglyphs are easy. This one says,
CATES IN THE MORNING and that swirly one,
NO PAIN, NO PAIN, today the practical
Feast-day of St Bartokomous, who wrote
God is most perfect, this His indigence,
And gaped in satisfaction, doubtlessly.
Over the air conditioner man hath sprayed,
HARM TO A WISE MAN IN HIS BROTHER’S FIELD.
Prefects prefer straight-shooters, schooled in plain
Annunciation, all lean and clean in tone.
The pink one pricked above the mansard reads,
DRAGONS FORGET THEIR EGGS. Who claims they don’t?
They disbelieve in swords, even in dark
And ribald festivals of patriots.
St Evelyn said, This ghetto is my stage
And squashed his inner pupa. He was mad,
This wight who wrote beside the padlocked door,
THE WORLD IS COMING TO THIS STAGE. STAY TUNED.

Saturday, May 09, 2015

Virgil & the Bees

appeared in Angelic Dynamo


we have rather chosen to fill our hives with honey and wax;
thus furnishing mankind with two of the noblest things, which
are sweetness and light.
--Swift

A flat gray stone absolved of dung and schmutz,
Warmed by the sun and near, not in, a grove,
Proximate to a meadow, not to sheep,
Unthinking sweaters on the hoof, at hand
Running water for sound effect: then sit,
And you will find the bees. Theirs is a mind
Unfit for your accommodating self.
Like physicists, they are absorbed by thoughts
Too pure and rarefied for you. They work,
The autumn ever coming, honey from
The dandelion and excrete a light
So fine it makes divine commedias
A piece of cake, a holiday of dusk.
He listens: you can see him move his lips,
No buzz, no hum. Hexameters like glass,
The shape of cells, coincidentally--
They were invented to store wisdom, wax,
And pollen effluents. Thus you have flowers,
He thinks, stung by the notion Dido walks
Amidst gray flowers she can never touch.

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

My Unravished Bride

Medusa’s head above the door

Has stoned the crows and salesmen, too;
But no one ever rocked me more
Than igneous, impassive you,
Though permanent now as headstones cut
With mottoes, there beside my walk,
So poets can imagine what
Art would sound like if it could talk.
Medusa once was fair herself
And drove the bright boys wild with lust.
Like you now, from her warden shelf,
She flakes in petrifying dust.

Friday, May 01, 2015

A Little Learning

Only a woman's hair, he kept repeating,
Proving that erudition didn't work.
Precedent wasn't a cure; it wasn't then,
And repetition didn't make it so.
And anyway, the dresses weren't.  The shoes,
The winter coats.  Or little socks.  A hair,
Now that was synecdoche, which, it was known,
Couldn't be traded on the heart's exchange
For love or money, blood or Latin verse.