Maybe that man in the painting,
Grey, upright, unfeeling,
really is the Son of Man—
Divine: of the father and of the son,
And of the holy ghost.
How did he spend his Christmas mornings as a child?
If he is mortal after all—
the kind who strolls along with an Eve at dusk:
Who is his Gabriel?
Did he ever place an offering on the desk of a Teacher?
Whoever he is, does he wash them all away,
Or rather hide behind his sins?
And is that really even an apple?
Flying high our years, our senses of Self, stitched with dermis,
are a fabric of synapses— electric,
flapping in the August wind like our shirts and the loose
upholstery of your passenger seat.
Full speed at eighty in a sixty
under gauzy clouds and a waning moon,
my fingers feel the air like water
and we are empty, wafting
above the warm earth before us and
grasping at what we have and have not.
As the sky begins to lighten,
and another day, another dose of entropy
adds to the wear on our threadbare lives,
I try to remember our molecules—an ocean
that knows not of time, but only of perpetual motion.
I used to know you through more than our fiber optic nothings:
As wild hair and ****** knees, a moleskin and a fountain pen,
A teeming scowl and harrowing slur of a laugh, seeing every word spoken.
As children on the cusp of something in the stick of June, I knew you—
Strong and blinding, you reside in a dark and colorful maze.
Lost or found, I imagine that you are sending cigarette smoke signals
Wafting up, indistinguishable through the city smog,
Out the window of an apartment in which you do not reside
Or snaking through the metro, slouched over in a grey haze, unaware
That you can still stand taller than the rest of us.
Some might say that the three sisters
weaving the threads of our existence
measuring out our tribulations
and cutting us loose to god knows where
have taken to knitting,
but I believe that this has been the year of pieces--
discarded and colorful like a Pompeiian mosaic.
dusty and thrilling, ancient and newfound
we have been shattered and glued and arranged
and it is not the stars, but ourselves that have been
lined up so that we can make sense
of something in the lot we have.
entertaining the notion that god is a clumsy potter since 1997
Keep in mind that when Russula,
humble, dewy and smelling of musk and rain,
Is brushed off by some unknowing passerby
Or grows thirsty in the sunlight,
It still leaves a silky fingerprint in the soil.
There is a man at the circus
who draws scarf after scarf from his sleeve.
Fragile cloth, taut in his grip,
bends around his fingers as he pulls,
strips of color from some hidden place
until they are waving overhead, casting shadows,
catching wind, and catching eye,
as onlookers lose sight
in the glare of spotlight and color,
he himself squinting.
So you are with my words--
drawing, bending, and smiling blind
at whatever it is you grab and sift
through, like the scarf man must
as he wanders the empty stadium
when the crowds have gone away,
kicking cans and picking up dimes
as he pushes the scarves back
up his sleeves until tomorrow.
I did not bring flowers
when I came to your empty home,
a house filled, a cacophony, a tray of hot food
to accompany us on the couch
as we marveled at your mother's trip to Italy,
the ice-cream cones in London,
a tarnished ring.
Driving away, she and the fog hung
low, in the yellow 9 o' clock sky--
and the rest of us.