We’re Doing

We’re turning the orchard
into a planetarium.

We’re producing the film to fulfill
the promise of mass communication.

We’re taking down the altar
and putting up a stationary bike.

We’re meddling in the lives of others
who have no business in others’ lives.

We’re making sand castles
out of melting ice cream.

We’re circling the spire
under a canopy of cauliflower.

We’re putting the computer
to sleep.

We’re asking for repentance
or perhaps dodecahedrons.

We’re withering under the weight
of shoelaces and air conditioners.

We’re separating the colors
before the spin cycle.

We’re masking our tutelage
with rice and other delectables.

We’re showering gifts
on unsuspecting umbrellas.

We’re spacing the margins
evenly with not a little guilt.

We’re pulling the drawers
and replacing them with escalators.

We’re tightening the screws
and fitting the frames.

We’re basking in sour slices
of unripened tarragon.

We’re working our way
back to beginnings or something.

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Roadwork

They’re performing superficial renovations on the pavement. Some make do with a face. Some swear by a hubcap. Reach the speed limit. Parkway. Closed for destruction. Acres of dotted yellow lines. Sign here for deregulation. A matter of swollen debris. Potholes reveal years of patches. A definite curve tending to slope in the center of the road. See we’re above the sidewalk. Measuring distances between two points. Surveying the landscape. Terrible thing they had to tear down those trees. It hurt me something terrible. I swear since they cut through this town I haven’t been able to sleep at night. Day neither. If only they’d put up a light or a sign. Do you think that would make a difference?
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Have At It

another still
life tragedy

sunset face down
in the rotunda

you mailbox me
orange lens

shift to vague
mouthful of house

dear sweet olive
branching to kiss

my skull match
flame slate trail

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You Are Here

Concentrate on
your position

or the undertow
will pull you in

that’s what it does
the weigh of its how

and there is no
escape, or glance

the sun stands still
resolute, solution

not unimaginary
but separate

leaving existence
to detritus, the muck

that pulled you out
of the ocean, friend.

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“Leave Empty”

said the sign on the library shelf
said the last page of the book
said the glow of the television screen
said the chair
said the symphony hall acoustics
said the path to enlightenment
said the signifier
said the question to the questionnaire
said the page not found error message
said the last few years
said the vacuum cleaner
said the half eaten apple core
said the cardboard box collapsed
said the broken vase full of flowers
said the fullness of time
said the pulse to the blood
said the eye to the window
said the pie
said the last stop of the bus route
said the grocery bag
said the current
said the holes in the cement
said the ink cartridge
said the button to the buttonhole
said the shirt to the torso
said the evacuation procedure
said the body
said the picture frame
said the patch to the rip in the fabric
said the weakest link in the chain
said the flower to the sunrise
said the blowhole to the whale
said the verb to the noun
said the pot of gold
said the corn to the husk
said the raindrop to the cloud
said the glue
said the plot of land
said the narrative
said the duck to the goose
said the wave to the microphone
said the light to the flash
said the hallway to the stairs
said the mausoleum
said the stain
said the brick to the mortar
said the ring
said the mouth
said the last words
said the empty.

This space left intentionally blank.

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The Dancing

All this choreographed
falling, a series
of dives

in search of pattern
by way of seeking
restless

fluttering seams
pirouette
a turn

the motion is set
silhouette
in front

behind the kick
step lightly
against

your partner, alone
in parts attended
by tempo

or this: you’re so clumsy
if you threw
yourself

to the ground, I’m sure
you’d miss
at least.

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For Love, Memory

Memory is a kind
of fire, sad drowsy flame,
electrical current
connecting one

moment to the next,
to now. Leaves under
foot disintegrate,
grass retains its texture.

You walk into space
and create what
was only nothing
a second before.

It repeats, circular
motion around the sun
for love, planets
falling into one another.

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Mistakes Were Made

We didn’t make it to the party.

A wrong turn prevented arrival.

We lost all sense of direction.

Something about sloppy notetaking.

No landmarks for guidance.

If we’d set out sooner, that might have made a difference.

Or could figure an alternative route.

Adding insult to injury, the brakes gave out.

Then the road became just a pile of rubble.

Shots were heard in the distance.

We knew we were getting closer.

If only we’d paid attention to that sign a while back.

As the crow flies.

Now they’re circling us.

Our car has turned into a Leviathan, stalking.

We crushed a bunny rabbit and didn’t even procure an egg.

Stick a finger in your mouth that’s which way the wind is blowing.

It’s at the top of my list.

Any further questions?

Next time we’ll hire a driver.

Or at least a bigger car.

We’re already mapping out another party.

We have to be careful with our spelling.

And I accept all responsibility.

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