I mind less
that you go far away in time.
Once I had to harden myself to the idea.
Now I ask more of it, and you, and the carryover.
Those I find time for presently
do not bring this cup
of stars your listening makes.
Few of us are free of petty necessity, hurts
spun back to inflictions, ambition
rocking to exhausted desire. I worry
less that I’m not into this. I love
the curtain between us. The old space
of sailing, the birds that fly
so far from land.
Origin is Your Original Sin
Not to have touched your starting point.
Never to have reached for where you are.
To renounce splitting a single
thing in half. Never to have fooled
yourself or others. To have no cause
for redirection. To let alone the long odds
and the favourable. Not to be this or
that. Neither spatialised, nor
spiritualised. To leave your bear
in the eternal winter dream of spring.
Not to emerge. Never to mate
or part with time. Not to be licked
into shape, never to mind the branching
acts, the superstitious rags
you might have tied to trees beside
the wells. Beside the mossy holy
depth of wells. Never to speak
of wells, the steadfast eye of water.
Never to try the thick entanglements
of air and blood. Never to see the salmon
leap. To feel no difference in up
and down. To get the soporific
movement of the sea but neither its lifting
or its breaking dreams. Never to raise
a single velvet curtain of a dream. Still, to touch
as near to life as music does. To go to no
lengths, great or small. No distance,
then, no ground to cover.
Like burning paper or shaved
ice, you’ll always appeal
for a bit more time. I’ve
tried to read your leaflets
wherever you’ve tacked
them up. When I catch
up to you I find you covered
with excrescence. Your raised
pours are chiefly there for
gaseous exchange. I do
not accuse you of lying
to the wind. Your fruit
has winter interest. It may
be more endearing than
your bloom. The tune
is green and vital if I hear
you right, a quantum
percussion nature drums
to the cusp of summer
and fall. When your small
fruits centred in your
shallow drum I thought
of a tambourine before
the metal discs attach.
You were a drum so scant
I could talk through your
skin, a drum for light
and untrained thrills.
In singing they call this
swaying at the back:
it’s joining something
glorious — without the risk
of doing it in.