The mock orange like a rumor
is nothing to the wind.
Under the pepper tree’s constantly falling leaves
I am small. Stars wound the nothingness
with shreds of light like memories.
This is a concealed backyard. But,
it’s never really still.
There’s someone else’s dog, clock, door, bamboo,
TV, chimes, electricity,
everything so filled with movement all the time.
In the darkness, tassels of wisteria–
violent lavender snow. I recall how,
once on the edge of a Pasadena ravine, I was raped
until in my mind I agreed to take him
inside, became another woman,
one who consented and so for a moment,
In the morning, it’s two hours getting beyond
pain as certain as damp weather.
Finally, walking your oblivious dog around the corner,
you follow a caravan of clouds traveling
slow and across the gold towers of Century City.
A man throws a beer can from his car.
A yellow finch lands on a stop- light.
It returns to green. You linger in what it is to be lost
and listening to that freedom, sense the weight
of even the growing grass.
The city is hard and stupid with hardness,
the young backfiring up the streets after midnight.
It interests you— the facelessness
how we all become similarly mystical when dying.
This storm will be warm and swollen with jasmine.
This rain will swell lace through the purple trees.
(You already put your winter wools away
One woman leaves the frame as another one enters.
A distant friend’s child has died before her,
and she’s an old woman.
The sign over an ancient door translates
into something about a tailor and a cook.
The unlit street lamps whisper.
You would have held her close if she’d have let you.
But you don’t know what to say.
And so you know you must say nothing.
Published in Smartish Pace/2007
The Man She Found On The Beach
the shape of her body
with the fit of their bodies—
the glove, the seizure.
You love the beginning, he says,
mouth catching, then sifting curiously
through her arrhythmic heart,
leaping in & out—
She loves the beginning—
it demands a whole story—
hears only wave & wave after molten wave.
He sees old sailboats burned up in the sun.
The bed is a lit room between them.
How like sugar some sweat.
Desire is a Christ that's not torn—
Published in Pool/Spring 08