paper lizards

 

 

after she stumbles we both stop 

it’s a tack she says picking up that tiny blue I guess kids are pulling them down she stretches to the top of the board reinserting the construction paper lizards leer and form orange-tongued hisses I nod I get it I understand

there are days when the air is so full so heavy with voices sound words metal simply pops out reptiles fall down little feet crush what gluesticks stuck together it’s hard to hear to feel your own lungs breathe you just walk on 

please save all the data to the disk

if there’s a penguin on the tray it’s snowing but no one has coats when the bell rings this isn’t a talking time we are quiet mice yet syllables rise syllables fall consonants and high-pitched vowels melt together on our tongues

the cafeteria will furnish bagged lunches

green papers wave now everyone turn face the building we don’t know we don’t get the message but what does it matter lead us back to our seats to the carpet quickly quietly now everyone sit down now everyone      breathe

the last person in closes the door





wordle 291


 

37

 

storm warning

she speaks monotonously to the bend in the wall.   she drones.
outside this window the field is full of birds:   pairs of killdeer, of canada geese.
a red-tailed hawk circles then lands on the broken goalpost.
I turn away;   I turn into the cave of this room.
sun binds the space between us.
your mouth is a straight line — a vow of anger, of silence.
 

 
red-fisted morning
this branch like a small tree
falls

 

 

 

wordle 108

kernels | summer edition 2013

 

answer me.

 

 
am I dust to you?
am I ash?
a gasp swirling in gravitational pull?
 

(father)

answer me.
 

my face
my arms
a cloud of sloughed off cells
 

am I blessed to you?
 

(father)

am I a pulse?
a breath?
am I?
 

in this instant
in this shared ride
in this unbalanced slide into blue
 

answer me.
 

(when you slap me do you feel my wings?)

 

 

wordle 98

this is the (art)

 
this is the mist
this is the road that curves
this is the air
sticky
and
scaled
like a
pearly
sea
 
(chimes)
 
this is the linen
these are the edges that tatter
these are the bones
dry
and
scattered
like
straw
 
(knocks)
 
this is the mirror
this is the silver deposited
this is my skin
raw
and
charged
like a
tungsten
filament
bulb
 
(beware)
 
this is the art
this is the smallest unit of life
this is the sparrow
cautious
and
embedded
within
its own
membrane
 

 

 

wordle 92 and wordle 93

my name would become legend

 

                  “Come with me, Mama Goose!
                    I know where your baby is."
                          — Puss in Boots

 

the burden
of this palace
breaks me
 
roomafterroomafterroomafterroom
 
each step a bitter virtue
within success this hidden
responsibility
 
I lie awake
listening
to the fire
 
practiceeachbreatheachnodeachword
 
searching through that tumult
for the clarity of my diminishing
youth
 
someday
I’ll ditch these
palace steps
 
drunkonwinerecitingpoetry
 
this giddy
wish
to be king

 

 

 

wordle 90 and wordle 91

wake

 

she smokes like a chimney
she is brandishing an unfiltered cigarette

we cross a bridge
the coke-stink of this town hangs between us
like a tombstone

we pass the tobacco field
a green infusion into a rural wasteland textured with steel
and mountains     stripped of coal

there’s always snakes in the tobacco field
(she says)     I roll down the window

the sun ekes through empty branches
it breaks onto the slurping river
glinting like rows of tires in a junkyard

you know I told him to stop
(she says)     I told him

she crushes the cigarette between her fingers
I look at houses flying past like abandoned railcars
boards on the doors     gaping windows     sad sagging roofs

I really believe her this time
I forget about the snakes     (shiny black and thick as a tire)

yeah     (she says)
there’s always snakes

 

 


the sunday whirl