Friday, September 28, 2012

Institutional Memory

The Drive Home

They drove the Haldol home, neat.
Deft plunge into your writhing muscle,
clenched tethered animal drenched and driven
beneath my hands

A sharp tang of metal in the mouth, we shared
great gulps of air
made rank with fear, a tincture of shit
at war
with the high gloss of sour sweat swelling the sides
of our sealed tin can

Hurtling west running the lights driving you home
under low spelter skies
slashing teeth biting down
on round boneyard howls  

heard down a drain pipe our free hands a beat behind
your upturned feet churning
in sacred dance,

perhaps, bestowed as rain from the gods
pouring through the shattered moon roof

home at last.
We pierced the circle drive
and trailed you inside, borne along
by wordless monks  
the sign of the cross
in four-point restraint

your eyes rolling back
as you received the blessed sacrament.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Mom's house, Dad's house

Long Division

In dreams we yearn for transport, true enough
I suppose and

awake or not I ferried you
swift waters,
a Ferryman with aspirations.

Dreaming, you were conveyed
from shore to shore
roiled by mighty rivers,
swept away again and again your world
receding to a single chafing pea

concealed beneath the mattress
of your childhood bed.

Equations dream of perfect quotients,
if they sleep at all.

I carried you
over wild rivers of
imperfect arithmetic.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Thin Ice

A History Of The North Country

I linger on the blowing passage that
drifts whorls of snow across crisp swept pages,
great heaving shoulders poised on the thin cusp
at the white margins, finger floating down the

flawless powdered face lacing through stands of
towering words their branches thrusting high
into the blue vault frantically combing  
a rising ocean of carbon for a path

back over mirror ice and hushed cushioned
floors of boreal forest, locked away
in sedimentary pages, ancient  
runes set to thaw and seep before my eyes.

Monday, September 24, 2012

game of cricket

Evening Descends

Your high flutey rasp nowhere
but everywhere, touching off
a methodical elimination

of plausible explanations,
seemed integral at first to the
plot of the police procedural

unfolding on the screen
at least until an abrupt
change of scenery demanded

a certain degree of fidelity
to continuity leaving only the sudden
flare of the infernal purring motor

idling eternally in my head
as the likely source of the
rhythmic bowing,

a minute punch-drunk
cellist madly torturing
the scales until you gave yourself

away; black carapace, bullet
hole through the blue rug,
lone note in a John Cage piece

captured and released into
the gathering darkness
of the backyard, the emptied

husks of my cupped hands
extended in sustained

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

No surprise

We Are The Forty-Seven Percent

Surprised?  The way we're surprised when morning
follows night, at fuzz on a peach, the sea seeks
the moon, coffee keeps us up, lions eat
their kill, hens lay eggs, eggs beget chickens,

pencils go dull, fox sox box, sourdough
rises, stocks fall, the dog's wet nose, morning
dew, money talks, glass cracks, the haunting past,
Ellington swings, the knuckleball breaks, our

dad’s face in the mirror, mesmerizing
screens, bee's make honey, wine from grapes, the stroke
of a brush, the turn of a phrase, a well
turned leg, thirst and hunger, doubt and fear, am

I surprised?  The way I’m surprised when we
ignore the past, bow down to magic, see
Black or White, fall prey to fear; the prowling
mob bays for blood, bestows the crown of blame.