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a loyalty of cranes

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[13 Feb 2027|12:53pm]

adara sánchez anguiano.

he showed where the incandescence had brushed him
I am a drop of gold he would say
I am molten matter returned from the core of the earth to tell you interior things
--anne carson



[mostly ; ask to be added.
i like new friends, but please don't steal.]
00218 &&&&&&

A POSSUM ENTERING THE ARGUMENT | Tom Healy [27 Jul 2013|11:02am]
We’re talking about
when we met
and you say

it was easier
to fall for me thinking
(I’ll remember

this pause)
it was likely I’d be
dead by now.

Talking. Falling.
Thinking. Waiting …
Have I

undone
what you’ve tried to do?
You say no.

You say the surprise
of still being
is something

being built—
the machine of our living,
this saltwork of luck,

stylish, safe,
comfortable and
unintended.

Meanwhile, I haven’t
had the opportunity
to tell you, but

our lovely little dog
has just killed
a possum.

Maybe it’s unfair,
a possum entering
the argument here.

But I lay it down
before us:
because an ugly

dying possum
played dead
and didn’t run,

its dubious cunning
was brought to an end
outside our door

by our brutal, beautiful
and very pleased
little dog.

So how do I say
that this is not
about death or sadness

or even whether
you really
first loved me

waiting, thinking
I’d be
dying young?

It’s just that
standing there
a few minutes ago

holding a dead possum
by its repellent
bony tail,

I was struck by how
eerily pleased I was
to be a spectator

to teeth, spit,
agony and claw,
feeling full of purpose,

thinking how different
in our adversaries
we are from possums.

We try love—
the fist of words,
their opening hand.

And whether we play
dead or alive,
our pain, the slow

circulation of happiness,
our salt and work,
the stubborn questions

we endlessly
give names to
haunt us with choice.
&&&&&

ELEGY WITH LIES | Bob Hicok [23 May 2013|10:44am]
This lost person I loved. Loved for a hundred years.
When I find her. Find her in a forest. In a cabin
under smoke and clouds shaped like smoke. When I find her
and call her name (nothing) and knock (nothing)
and build a machine that believes it’s God and the machine
calls her name (nothing) and knocks (nothing).
When I tear the machine down and she runs from the cabin
pointing a gun at my memories and telling me
to leave, stranger, leave, man of hammers.
When I can’t finish that story. When I get to the gun
pointed at my head. When I want it to go off.
When everything I say to anyone all day long
is bang. That would be today. When I can’t use her name.
All day long. Soft as cotton, tender as kiss. Bang.
001 &&&&&&

SEX WITHOUT LOVE | Sharon Olds [09 May 2013|11:27pm]
How do they do it, the ones who make love
without love? Beautiful as dancers,
gliding over each other like ice-skaters
over the ice, fingers hooked
inside each other’s bodies, faces
red as steak, wine, wet as the
children at birth whose mothers are going to
give them away. How do they come to the
come to the come to the God come to the
still waters, and not love
the one who came there with them, light
rising slowly as steam off their joined
skin? These are the true religious,
the purists, the pros, the ones who will not
accept a false Messiah, love the
priest instead of the God. They do not
mistake the lover for their own pleasure,
they are like great runners: they know they are alone
with the road surface, the cold, the wind,
the fit of their shoes, their over-all cardio-
vascular health—just factors, like the partner
in the bed, and not the truth, which is the
single body alone in the universe
against its own best time.
&&&&&

[09 May 2013|06:19pm]
I know the way is not a way, the door between is not the door between, but if you listen to Alan Watts and then play Alice Coltrane in the mid-afternoon when the sun is streaming in the window through the lilacs and the bees are buzzing in the parsley and children are laughing down the street and everything you held on to is suddenly gone, the orbit of your life thrown off and you find yourself spinning sidelong through what you thought was solid, in that moment, with the harp playing at the sun on your knees, something happens I could only call an explosion, could call running in the forest until I found a deep still pond at the center of me, like RS says, a well we can drink from, here, enough for ever and always, a tunnel to the center of the earth, but not like you thought, not away but deep into, deep into the center of everything you wanted to get away from, the way the safest thing to do in the face of an unswimmable wave is duck straight into the center of it, here, here, holding your own knees, here, finally, here.
&&&&&

SOME FEEL RAIN | Joanna Klink [28 Apr 2013|08:57pm]
Some feel rain. Some feel the beetle startle
in its ghost-part when the bark
slips. Some feel musk. Asleep against
each other in the whiskey dark, scarcely there.
When it falls apart, some feel the moondark air
drop its motes to the patch-thick slopes of
snow. Tiny blinkings of ice from the oak,
a boot-beat that comes and goes, the line of prayer
you can follow from the dusking wind to the snowy
owl it carries. Some feel the terrible sunlight
well up in blood-vessels below the skin
and wish there had been less to lose.
Knowing how it could have been, pale maples
drowsing like a second sleep above our temperaments.
Do I imagine there is any place so safe it can’t be
snapped? Some feel the rivers shift, blue veins
through soil, as if the smoke-stacks were a long gray
dream of exhalation. The lynx lets its paws
skim the ground in snow and showers.
The wildflowers scatter in warm tints until
the second they are plucked. You can wait
to scrape the ankle-burrs, you can wait until Mercury
the early star underdraws the night and its blackest
districts. And wonder. Why others feel
through coal-thick night that deeply-colored garnet
star. Why sparring and pins are all you have.
Why the earth cannot make its way towards you.
&&&&&

ONE LAST THING BEFORE I GO | Laura Eve Engel [23 Apr 2013|05:32pm]
for Dean Young

The wrist that holds the leash strains
but does not break, then draws up
new contracts with the same mad
dogs. The broken bowl now holds
the shape of glue, its jagged patterns,
but it holds, and I can’t tell how to call it,
if it’s mostly meant for holding
or if its mostly being held, and this
keeps me awake in the dark
unsure of where to pour my cereal
until I arrive at sleep like a bad decision.
Outside the crabapples haven’t moved,
they slip through stages of soft rot
until each turns to yard, Psst,
I’m frightened,
says the iron fence
whose rot moves in and grips
more slowly, whose rust will strip
and sting and stay. Every bone I throw
slings back, Saturday morning fills
with women buying china, arriving home
to pile their cabinets higher. Your yowl
again in my ear, instead of your broad back
in the doorway. All this standing still.
Remind me to forget when our stillness
was somehow moving, to forget misplacing
your hands in my bed as your missed plane lifted
out of the bright city. Psst, I’m frightened,
your calves like pillars, leaves intuiting
the color of ground before they drop,
cicadas easing off their crusts in the dark,
everything perfectly clear, all the brown husks
spelling I love you, I’m leaving.
But the leaving season goes on for miles,
hauling its cold freight across the year,
accepting stowaways but never the right ones.
When what passes passes at the speed of staying
and the heart’s hopped a groaning length
of train and the nightshirt’s stuffed
with arms and the cupped ear can hear
to the field’s far corner and the voice
hanging in the throat unwraps itself
like a bat and flies out, will there be at last
some crisp unsticking, a caboose’s distant chuff
and wag, the red-and-white-striped gates
hoisting their easy burdens?
&&&&&

WINGED PURPOSES | Dean Young [23 Apr 2013|12:52pm]
Fly from me does all I would have stay,
the blossoms did not stay, stayed not the frost
in the yellow grass. Every leash snapped,
every contract void, and flying in the crows
lingers but a moment in the graveyard oaks
yet inside me it never stops so I can’t tell
who is chasing, who chased, I can sleep
into afternoon and still wake soaring.
So out come the bats, down spiral swifts
into the chimneys, Hey, I’m real, say the dream-
figments then are gone like breath-prints
on a window, handwriting in snow. Whatever
I hold however flies apart, the children skip
into the park come out middle-aged
with children of their own. Your laugh
over the phone, will it ever answer me again?
Too much flying, photons perforating us,
voices hurtling into outer space, Whitman
out past Neptune, Dickinson retreating
yet getting brighter. Remember running
barefoot across hot sand into the sea’s
hovering, remember my hand as we darted
against the holiday Broadway throng,
catching your train just as it was leaving?
Hey, it’s real, your face like a comet,
horses coming from the field for morning
oats, insects hitting a screen, the message
nearly impossible to read, obscured by light
because carried by Mercury: I love you,
I’m coming. Sure, what fluttered is now gone,
maybe a smudge left, maybe a delicate under-
feather only then that too, yes, rained away.
And when the flying is flown and the heart’s
a useless sliver in a glacier and the gown
hangs still as meat in a locker and eyesight
is dashed-down glass and the mouth rust-
stoppered, will some twinge still pass between us,
still some fledgling pledge?
&&&&&

WELCOME MORNING | Anne Sexton [16 Apr 2013|07:41am]
There is joy
in all:
in the hair I brush each morning,
in the Cannon towel, newly washed,
that I rub my body with each morning,
in the chapel of eggs I cook
each morning,
in the outcry from the kettle
that heats my coffee
each morning,
in the spoon and the chair
that cry "hello there, Anne,"
each morning,
in the godhead of the table
that I set my silver, plate, cup upon
each morning.

All this is God,
right here in my pea-green house
each morning
and I mean,
though often forget,
to give thanks,
to faint down by the kitchen table
in a prayer of rejoicing
as the holy birds at the kitchen window
peck into their marriage of seeds.

So while I think of it,
let me paint a thank-you on my palm
for this God, this laughter of the morning,
lest it go unspoken.

The joy that isn't shared, I've heard,
dies young.
&&&&&

FIFTEEN WAYS TO STAY ALIVE | Daphne Gottlieb [01 Mar 2013|10:12am]
1. Offer the wolves your arm only from the elbow down. Leave tourniquet space. Do not offer them your calves. Do not offer them your side. Do not let them near your femoral artery, your jugular. Give them only your arm.

2. Wear chapstick when kissing the bomb.

3. Pretend you don’t know English.

4. Pretend you never met her.

5. Offer the bomb to the wolves. Offer the wolves to the zombies.

6. Only insert a clean knife into your chest. Rusty ones will cause tetanus. Or infection.

7. Don’t inhale.

8. Realize that this love was not your trainwreck, was not the truck that flattened you, was not your Waterloo, did not cause massive hemorrhaging from a rusty knife. That love is still to come.

9. Use a rusty knife to cut through most of the noose in a strategic place so that it breaks when your weight is on it.

10. Practice desperate pleas for attention, louder calls for help. Learn them in English, French, Spanish: May Day, Aidez-Moi, Ayúdeme.

11. Don’t kiss trainwrecks. Don’t kiss knives. Don’t kiss.

12. Pretend you made up the zombies, and only superheroes exist.

13. Pretend there is no kryptonite.

14. Pretend there was no love so sweet that you would have died for it, pretend that it does not belong to someone else now, pretend like your heart depends on it because it does. Pretend there is no wreck — you watched the train go by and felt the air brush your face and that was it. Another train passing. You do not need trains. You can fly. You are a superhero. And there is no kryptonite.

15. Forget her name.
&&&&&

[18 Feb 2013|04:33pm]
And: cue blackness. Rot through. Cue deluge, fermata: the rains come. Cue monsoon, cue cyclone, cue every exotic and underground kind of catastrophe, avalanche and tephra. Every. Then; cue ash, cinder. Enough to bury a city. This heart is Pompeii.
001 &&&&&&

[07 Jan 2013|04:01pm]
"We asked the captain what course of action he proposed to take against a beast so large, terrifying, and unpredictable. He hesitated to answer, then said judiciously: I think I shall praise it. " -- from Praise by Robert Hass
001 &&&&&&

from CATCH | Caitlin Dwyer [15 Dec 2012|09:44am]
Strictly speaking, catch and release

does not prevent the pain of an animal—
but it defines an endpoint. A moment

of equilibrium, as scales slide like minutes
through slick fingers. The fish squirms away,

jaw torn open by the prong of a hook.
The body’s slender single muscle all at once

spasming toward survival.
Hook-rust imbedded in its jaw

stains its sight red. Its murky life now rippled with flame.
There are ways to let yourself be caught,

to let a small metal tip tear open
enough of you to make a mark.

Ways to bear scars like original skin.
In you, some tattered, blind creature
always singing.
&&&&&

[06 Dec 2012|07:23am]


P got a new tattoo, a line from a favorite poem of mine by Stanley Kunitz: Live in the layers, not in the litter. I love this man.
&&&&&

from A FEW OF THE CRIMES YOU'VE COMMITTED AGAINST MY HEART | Dara Weir [21 Nov 2012|11:34am]
Arson. Most of all arson. Tongues of flame flare lick, lick and like
So many others of us, I like fire and I like water & a good flaring.
Larceny. A little bit of larceny.
Treason. Exquisitely executed, the ultra high kind.
You committed fog against me. You committed horses
Against me. You attacked me with hummingbirds.
You ambushed me with iridescence.
You over-salted me with blizzards. You deserted me at noon.
You committed rain against me. You committed sharks against me.
With rivers and meadows, you lied to me, with canyons and the tops of fog
Shrouded mountains. You put ravens in there to kidnap me. You
Burned me with songbirds & nightfall & morning. You scalded me with
Flocks, you stole my tongue with tides. With all of this you put me down.
&&&&&

HI, AGAIN | Jordan Stempleman [15 Oct 2012|08:37pm]
It looks like I've done something terrible,
unforgivable, but all I've done is butchered
a pomegranate while listening to cartoons.
Who really gives a shit about fruit and its
triumphant preciousness, its leaking, its
lies about what I am and what I have done?
The older plant, on the dreary days, goes,
racism is an anthology, this water my fists,
no other, nothing more numerous or spread
from twig to twig. Child, you should take
yourself out for a glass of water, feel what
it's like to go where each cluster of bursting
fruit is nothing but hearing too much about
what I have done. Like, I'm ringing the neck
of another little, blind fish. He shudders
so much harder than what's going on now.
And when I rehearse, maybe in the house,
maybe with a package under my arm, but
with my forehead I sigh, and with my skies
I edge towards a moment that keeps all
I notice in front of me, the protest I'm afraid
of will be of a time when choice was the same
as enough, various the occasion to forgive me.
&&&&&

THE WAY IN | Linda Hogan [14 Sep 2012|04:14pm]
Sometimes the way to milk and honey is through the body.
Sometimes the way in is a song.
But there are three ways in the world: dangerous, wounding,
and beauty.
To enter stone, be water.
To rise through hard earth, be plant
desiring sunlight, believing in water.
To entire fire, be dry.
To enter life, be food.
&&&&&

CIRCLE OF SALT | Laura Kochman [18 Apr 2012|09:38am]
If I had no head. If no one raced ahead of me. If I could complete the task, finish the thought. If I had a horse to take me there. If my feet were not fastened to the ground. If I received instruction, or a letter, or an empty envelope. If imprinted. If I could make myself a mirror. If I could make a mirror an ocean. If I could make an ocean a forest. If I could find the pass, the pasture. If a fleet foot. If an ocean-going vessel. If the boat could be bailed. If I could find the mouth of the whale, the fibers of its dry teeth. If I drowned. If I did not drown. If I swallowed seawater and filtered out foreign bodies. If my mouth were so large I could not see my feet. If I had no feet. If a house had no footprint. If I slid along a glassy surface to a yawning doorframe, fast, made fast, fastened.
&&&&&

WISTFUL SOUNDS LIKE A BRAND OF AIR FRESHENER | Bob Hicok [09 Apr 2012|03:47pm]
I will go to Belfast, Maine, and read my poetry to crabs.
I'll stand on a platform of some kind in the company of wind
and look at pennants waving and think of the claws
of crabs waving in the wind of the Atlantic and be sad.
It's not that I don't have enough sadness, but I'm always looking
for better, more aquatic or tastier sadness, for the kind
of light that comes when the sky tilts its head at dusk
and wonders, in colors we understand as language, why this all
has to end. I could doff a Bogart hat and wag a tough cigarette
between my lips, smoke muscling up from my mouth as I say, it just does,
sweetheart, it just does, but the psychology of the fedora
escapes me. There's bread and calisthenics and lice and radar
and jars of blue stuff in stores, and maybe what I'm doing
when I cry to certain songs at seventy miles an hour, is proving
I've noticed that out of the nothing that could be here,
everything is. So I will go to Belfast, Maine, and wonder
what it's like to stand beside Main Street in the winter,
I'll put my head against the brick buildings I'm betting
live there year-round and describe the tropics to them
by having warm thoughts, and if you'd like to meet me there,
I'll be the man in the t-shirt that has an extra sleeve
in case the third arm I need shows up, because so far,
I've dropped almost everything I'm desperate to hold. 
&&&&&

THE UNIVERSE TALKS TO ITSELF [13 Oct 2011|03:26pm]
odd not to be able to tell anyone stories of what happened to us

      we can tell them to each other, this loop and the next

and what of what happened before

         this isn't the first time we've been here, so 
                  close to water, so close to sky

how do you know?

      the way bears find caves for the winter, the way the cranes 
             know to fly towards the Himalayas 
   fast til their hearts pound, when the cold winds come, when 
                the warm air sits higher and higher, 
            when they have to search harder for the sun

when?

    soon, beautiful, soon

//

singularity. time and space and illusion. we're all one?

I have come to tell you: there are no new stars

singularity. time and space and illusion. we're all one?

I have come to tell you: we are born from the fringes of the sun

 I am right next to you. open your eyes.

//

moments just are, they are the raw material of time
      I love the sound of your voice
  I was made for you
       I want to make you again and again


//

I dreamt we were trying to get away to find each other

                               I remember

You weren't there

      we were supposed to be in salt by now, following the
             water spiral, touching      I can't imagine 
            it will be much longer before we are facing,
                     touching

Facing? 
                          
          the loop is complete

//

God, I'm still so curious about you

I can't away from you

Again again

//


    



//

             Was it real?
              Does that matter?
 

         It was most certainly a holograph
       none of that could have happened


         You have surrounded me 
      for so long
             It's only fair


           

//


          She was definitely everywhere
001 &&&&&&

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