I had a really wonderful afternoon in Gainesville last week. I wandered and drove around to a lot of places by myself. Spent about three hours just stomping out ghosts and reading poetry in the park near where I used to live.
Anyway, this has nothing to do with that necessarily. And if I were taking Robert Bly's advice (I'm finally reading the entirety of Leaping Poetry) and running on wild association instead of sluggish association...
"I had a really wonderful afternoon in Gainesville last week. I wandered and drove around to a lot of places by myself. Spent about three hours just stomping out ghosts and reading poetry in the park near where I used to live.
Last summer I wrote some poetry that I'm not too embarrassed to post here, even though I haven't touched it since then."
Letting the Fish
“Feel the backbone with the knife,”
he says to you, as if a knife could feel.
The eye looks upon its entrails
And you cringe at the after-fight:
its disguise gone, he reveals
the filet beneath the skin.
The lake laps, not to question
But to affirm this ritual
And the eventual return
Of Y-bones, scales and broken might
To its sun-starved depths, an ersatz pike
Set free again unto the Earth.
Deceiver of the body, reflexive pain
Pulses in the place between
What is felt and what is spoken.
We call the shore dry land opposed
To water, but mean the two
Must meet. Your parents in a photo,
Younger than you, exist there, bright,
Having not imagined your life
As the throbbing spreads to your hand
Just as the sea rewrites the sand.
We Have Become Antique in Our Beliefs
Space between buildings carves a city of inverses
As the skyline cuts shapes in the horizon
Like miniature headstones of another universe
Where the sun forgets to do its rising.
The city in relief is the toad entwined in the hare
And when you see the young girl’s fur in the old
Woman’s bonnet, the illusion is laid bare.
Then the transparent air grows
Solid to our eyes and matter
Is pushed into silhouette. Our figures seem
Not like plodding things but better.
When robbed of crosses, golden rings,
Intentions like sharpened knives with no handles,
Cuff links and brooches, everything new,
We look less like innocent animals
And more as criminals just before death do.