Look over your shoulder for the hustle of words.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

The Arid Inland

There were vast shelves of water spilling out
and now they putrify.
A hand, a rod, a fist of silt
has been thrust as a stopper and now the inland lays
arid and stripped.

The canker will be cut out.
It must, and so with fine precision I train my eye
on the inner bruise and slice it from me.
Cut, cut, cut.
I loosen the rut, find the pained place
and plane it smooth with one deft flick.

And now I breathe again;
the infection turned out like a cheap thrill should be.
I return to the spring, kneel beside the water,
pull on the coat of Shaman, Healer....
and touch it with my own two hands.

This was the original yen,
the ignored lyric of the heart:
my own two hands.

The original sin:
to let strange mouths drink from the water.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Faces of Strangers

Each line about strangers jars me,
hardly softer than a crash,
a traffic smash.

I feel I steal something about them,
pin their struggling wings against my board
of collared soliloquy and practice
words in acid on their backs

sloughing bloody layers off.

I steal their faces, limbs
and thin them, smooth them out
and tweak their features for
my textual collection.

Bad fetishist, word and rhythm rapist
I take and take and for their labour give

unpaid anonymity.

The wish well

I am stilled in tongues, stopped
like a grabbed clapper.

The emptiness rings between my teeth,
pealing away into an oily well.
A solid well, constructed from a year of grit.

There may have been clean nests of
delicate comment once but I
have lost the air of remembrance.

All the entrances and exits were
silted up with coarse despair
when I began to wander in the wishpool

my ankles cooling for too long.

You cannot lose your heat
without extinguishing your fire.