poems

23 August 2014

#25: Grammar of Ornament

Proposition 3
As Architecture, so all works of the Decorative Arts, should possess fitness, proportion, harmony, the result of all which is repose.

This is you with your big face like landscape
and this is me

meeting you:
maybe what I'd formerly thought

was good was not so good;
rereading it. I can't stay here

seated beside myself with two ached backs
nor can drink the second coffee

yet these twin problems need attending.
I face them

before going to bed.
I face you all fondly.

The cat at the open door
sees fresh prey every evening.

She is so admirable.
It is a gift not to have to prove one's worth.

22 August 2014

#24: WWBD

Bob would just write and see what happens.
I don't have that initiative.
I would like to write a poem as perfect as Cocaine by John Weiners
which Yaul memorized for recitation for a class
I keep a copy taped to my desk
He manages to use those words you think are off limits
like love, heart, pure, fire, despair, rose, paradise, Hell, God, desire, dreams, longing-
words I am embarrassed to use or not good enough to
I have to assemble and ship two packages to the Bay Area
I have to get boxes and pack them with books and clothes
what else
I am a complainer
Bob would start by describing a word, concept, or natural thing
The view from her window however is just white adobe
The sounds of hired lawn mowers, the dog licking his chops on the floor.
Today she woke early to drive her brother to high school
and stopped after to pick up lattes
the drive crested La Jolla Shores coming down from Torrey Pines
State Reserve and over the bridge that spans the lagoon and the ocean
Usually there is one egret presiding but fog this morning obscured her
She let him pick the music
She leaves California for three years in the Midwest next week
She misses her boyfriend from whom this move separates her
Reading Barthes standardizes their plight but fails to painkill
He sends her sweet messages and they depress her
This move is professionally and financially intelligent
She will forge a network and produce her greatest work to date


16 August 2014

#23: Ribs

I have definitely been writing love poems
but am not worried about it
I'll retreat back into music
and wonder at its production
—stripped of verbiage—
clotted, ribbed, in a corset
returning to the same place for the same bite
of some meal

this generation isn't convinced
that audiences really wept
for Elvis

12 August 2014

#22: Sleeping

you know they love you if they take your picture while you're sleeping.
i take pictures because i feel like i understand things that way
if i feel i understand you even while you're sleeping i must really feel it
so i may love you
maybe it's any picture where they're not looking
maybe it's any picture
i can be very suspicious like love is

08 August 2014

#21: Dream Theory

I dreamt a person critiqued my work. It was not a new poem
but he hadn't seen it yet. In front of a class of three he made basic remarks
before privately mentioning cuts made into the paper:
"there's space for a friend here."

He meant himself. An unsurprising reveal, but kind. But
outside there was a blinding silver ocean and hordes of swimmers.
I was so distracted. Off to the side, I reevaluated the relationship,
kept watching the beach-goers.

It was a sexualized dream because he stood behind me
and we leaned over, touching. I eventually
recognized his spirit and that was that.
I attached him to a person in my waking life.

07 August 2014

#20: 50 Poses

I don't know that I'll ever be
able to take full advantage


05 August 2014

#19: After Seeing A Summer Movie

I buy and give
freely. In fact
it is my art.

I am surprised
by love and
the power it has

to turn out music
or upend
each other's expectations

you have to understand
I'm still happy
I have a plan

03 August 2014

#17: Humid

It's not too soon to plan for the end
of the landscape of Buenos Aires
which you will be leaving for dead

I chose to take advantage
of rain's silences
to focus on how owls fought

and reconciled throughout
the summer, a few drams
in a row, which were damp

from the heat in the air.
Ultimately night
had been weeping all the time

and was ready for me
to relinquish
your side and return

to a wide stance alone
a horned owl in a palm tree
balancing while I prepare to move




02 August 2014

#18: Dew Point, Recoleta

I care too!
I like my experiments, but I want the viewers to know
I think about it too, and can even be moved.
E.g. here's an acute feeling—the acutest—
one wants to paint it—
I came too. During a lightning storm.
The windows were open and there was no
question about it, it was pouring.
We were inside
like now, on this fresh continent in August.
I don't know how I'd describe us to you
except as sensual and psychic,
and engaged, focused, considering our weather.
We made muscular streaks on mirrored doors
and fell asleep watching and listening to neon rain.

01 August 2014

#16: Fri Aug 1

Fri Aug 1: I receive a gift
shipped in brown paper
the shape of a book
that reveals to be a book
different from what I expected:
a book of patterns
like everything
the sun chimes its billows
and dents in the patio
pets watch the ripples
as the book keeps getting better
because it was a gift
because of who gave it
and how it buoys the rest of the month