poems

30 October 2013

Page 8 of Brooklyn College's Graduate Program Online Application

From what country or part of the world did you or your family originally come?

Page One of Online MFA Applications

Which of the following racial groups best describes you?

21 October 2013

#25: "A Tree Filled With Angels, Bright Angelic Wings Bespangling Every Bough Like Stars"

When according to Blake, "God put his head to the window."
Like his, our mothers taped our hard work to her walls.

15 October 2013

#24: Thought Toward Irreverence

The past cannot betray one.
Only revelation.
And even in those cases
it was you "all along."
Sit and look occupied;
trust the existence of the situation.
Alone, one saves the effort.
Paired, too. And in this case
one's past swivels
irrelevantly on a rod.

#23: Mobiles

I fatigue and am not on. A neighbor distracts.
Across the street two cops unload
duffels from a patrol, and a girl with a pink
birthday bag sprouting lilies wisps past, watching.
Students in sandals make little lunges, shuffle their loose feet.
With each miniscule tread they are granted
that primary satisfaction of vitiating decadence.
At least they're not going backwards or stagnant, that is.
Now there's a personal terror in their stepping.

12 October 2013

#22: Locomotion

Crocodilians have a flexible, semisprawled posture.
Chameleons are the only modern reptile with a more erect posture.
The semierect posture makes it possible for some species to gallop if necessary.
An Australian species can reach a speed of 16km/h on an irregular forest floor.
Their ancestors actually had fully erect postures, indicating the sprawling evolved
after they adapted to life as semiaquatic ambush predators.
Their ankle bones, or tarsi, are highly modified.
Modern crocodilian locomotion is not a primitive trait, but a specialization.

[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crocodilia]

#21: When Was The Last Time You Thought About Your Parents?

Granted, the note assumes love is an inevitability.
He or she begins by relating the tone of his or her current status,
or by quoting a familiar. "After I shower I'll pick you up,
carry you around, and put you back down."
The responsible citizen cites his sources, e.g.,
I was once accessory to a damaging liaison;
I marginalize and am meticulous.

I no longer blame it.

11 October 2013

???

White lighters bad luck
sat in my chamber with dull hills
of hair and no room for a companion -

the labor of hefting it unthinkable
even at the thought of princes
underfoot. How many hundreds

of pounds it must weigh how unlikely
a man with a grip as to scale it.
Safety gator-tackles blocker.


Observation practice

I need an idea before beginning, not mere observation of sense.
My toes and legs are cold; my back and shoulders are sore.
The walls here have mosaics and framed images of roses.
Amidst these hangs a shiny map of the Forbidden City.
Whorl for a combined pleasure (is there no deeper action?) like a centrifuge
(Or that is a centrifuge). Through what the article calls purpose, object
Becomes instrument. Just so is landscape displaced portraiture.

08 October 2013

#20: Dream

I am back in Brooklyn and it is July.
It is my birthday and I wake up late.
R stands over me, saying: "Put clothes on,
I'm making you breakfast"and watching
me reach for a shirt while hiding myself.
Our attitudes shift and I stop hiding
and stand fully, and turn, looking for clothes.
R gives a few sentences on cereal
and coffee, and the gift of being stared at.
He tilts the sheen from breathless to comedic
and breathless, opening a window.

07 October 2013

#19: Dream

"We stand by the window embracing, and people look up from the street:"
—Paul Celan

Conflated pleasure with lack of pleasure and correlated weakness.
Either way, begging. All Signs Point To Yes.

06 October 2013

#18: New Place

Here I am (4 days before
move-in) negotiating. Thinking,
simplest way to brighten is with flowers.
Thinking, one buys weekly or biweekly
depending on stalk woodiness, vivacity,
and they rise glorious from big glass,
solving the room's smallness.
But then, what's that, ten dollars?
How am I oriented that I already vitiate next
week's colors with "How can I
afford flowers?" Most dendrites end
with raising rationalism and putting
the rest down- you either can or
can't afford them. Despite what they do for you.

02 October 2013

#17: Kathleen

The Ob/Gyn exam rooms overlook the UCSD
baseball fields. On one wall hang screens and equipment,
on one a print of Matisse with flowers and goldfish:
soft-edged, warm, gentle, calm. Kathleen
inserts herself and feels for my cervix. "These
are your ovaries:" tug, push. "And don't they feel
perfectly normal." I explain the aversion
to hormone implants and she tells me my methods
are fine. Baseball players jog the diamond.
"You seem quite the responsible girl," she says, and is off.

#16: Poem With Rhythms

(after Wallace Stevens)

The strike extended into evening
Affecting players.

The cup holding coins takes a metal smell on,
(A girl packs knives and dishrags for their
First shared space, impatient and excitable,)
Expendable, dark in there:

So the girl folds the knives up dearly.
Separately, he makes mini moves
And goes in further, though yet waiterly.

It could be that the strike was mere
or inaudible since she strayed, wrapping their knives.
There was an aptitude in her nervy, blank holding-off,
A high-class estrangement and re-enfranchisement
Richer than buying time. This stance toward us
She gloried and didn't it do her favors,
Including opting-out of players
And clocking no-shows. She kept us
Healthily at bay, we weren't worth waiting for
Even through dark glasses inside of a car.