The star spangled banner fluttered high,
in tandem with the Woodstock sway.
And those hands, the ones Dürer would proudly have shook
mutated to a place which we name perfection.
So, the master’s hands momentarily became star strangled
at once disassembling then reassembling its metric
in a way that Lincoln himself may well have appreciated.
One nation, one people and one flag.
Seismic shift caused by slight refrain.
A life abridged, after Ambrose Bierce
From the fourth floor it’s really such a long way down,
long enough to see each naked star disabled
by its own remote tenderness, or to almost touch
the unlocked gates of Hades as they swing unhinged.
Too far removed to regale Gods unknown
with endless tales of weep and wind.
From this place there is no sense of dormant wonder
waiting to weave domain, nor concealed portals
to unseen fairy worlds where tales of happiness are spun
in tandem with the need of each distressed heroine,
for in this place, love, or love’s dedicated whisper is muted
by detachment and enigma and the residue
of all human debris since her world began.
In this moment, in this place nothing else can be said to exist,
for temporarily, all life has been suspended.
Guardian angels are absent as if vertigo were a blunt sword
in the hands of celestial beings, who, paradoxically,
refuse to negotiate with the living about death.
This instant teeters on the brink of its own inability to subdivide
the juncture into countless unspoilt atoms, each one capable
of rebuilding the world anew with untarnished virgin block,
each one shorn from the empty husk of what might have been.
From the fourth floor, it’s such a very long way down.
explain their presence
to a past
that is proven,
nailed in time.
A fixed point
Never to be
Words like throng and cram and suffocate
of themselves explain little, if anything at all.
So we must add to it thread by broken thread,
layer by invisible layer
using words as though we had not yet
Words like metal and train, bake and burn
menstruating woman in hot August sun.
And the words which we omit are as valid
as the words which we choose.
So we shall not give vision to cool soft winds
or pitchers tall with crushed ice water
nor give sound to crisply laundered linen
or suggest vase for freshly cut rose.
Behind every single half impression
that we may have managed to vaguely evoke
lie images too enmeshed in the weave
to ever begin carry things other
than the fragile ghost of the message.
I see you
a long time ago
in old England
by mask of silk
by some lady
whose nights you stole
and her diamonds too.
But she forgave you,
in that vague way,
or the look in the eyes
she could not see
that you could die
for a cause
that your outlaw soul
than all the diamonds
yet to be stolen.
The girl alone
the street of curves,
have no past.
The girl alone
looks to the stars
big and twinkling
and begs them
but the stars
conscious of their breadth
are beyond reach
of things but born,
so they give no clue
as the girl alone
skirts the margin
of her blood milky