Poem 72 Revised

Monday
In the adolescence of exam week; no tests for days.
Shopping for horror films in the library with a borrowed card.
And for what? So I can sit here and pretend we all
didn’t just fail that Spanish exam… maybe it was
only me…
                 Muttering puttering stuttering, hiccups on paper
would look like hesitant curls of thrice erased answers, wisps
of changing enlightenment. We forgive hiccups, but ignorance
well, that’s why we learn tongues, to keep open minded, open mouthed.
I can sit here and watch over and over, dramatic irony gore glory
something gritty in a horror film with subtitles, pretending
I can hear their worry, would choose the right door, would run fast enough,
But the hiccups would come again, decisions made sloppy with indecision,
speed compromised with second guessing, drawing attention to
the alien notion of an uncomfortable situation.
Maybe that’s the point: a borrowed language, a borrowed cinema,
A borrowed plot line to see to the end… I suppose I’ll see you there. ­
—ECW

Poem 73 Revised

Thirteen with a globe and a sense of entitlement
topographer spins the ball backwards to see the blur
I want to tell her: invest, take the thick prick of your finger
and be brave. Halt the sphere, begin your life here.
 
But she won’t and neither would I. When I look backwards
at the thirteen-year-old fool fumbling with her atlas
I know it must be so. We are rabbits with pain bucket toes,
so lucky to be young, so young indeed.
—ECW

Poem 73 EditedPoem 73 Original

Poem 70 Revised

Astrophysics 101
The universe would turn this way and that in front of the bedroom mirror and sigh.
I’m expanding.
With her graviton fingers she would pluck at her dimpling rippling thighs.
To rearrange the molecules, planets and moons, to satisfy her vanity.
But they would return, settling in their most comfortable orbits,
And with such desperate dismay would throw down her asteroid fists and return to bed.
Her Lover, stirred from the sleep of their latest intimacy,
Would curl up against the cool touch of her vacuum skin and call to her in pillow whispers.
No, she would roll window side, wrapped in linen, and complain of
her belly and arms spilling out from the navy negligee.
So dark and deep one could be lost forever in the navel, the soft slope of her creasing elbows.
You’re Beautiful he would say, with his words hinging on the door
Of possibility. Knowing her secrets depends on negotiating these bedroom laws.
Speak sweetly, he knows she’s a woman after all…
I’m Fat
But you’re not. You’re just growing broader, more complex
Reaching the far corners of cognition.
An orgasm of potential, you claw the very walls of my being with hope
Of capturing you with symbols and numbers
You don’t know me.
But I must, and if you trust me, I’ll write lyrical equations of your mathematic miracles,
Count the satellites and sunspots, look this blemish a comet, this dimple an imploding star.
This wrinkle the rings of Saturn, please let me touch your soul.

Poem 62 Revised

They came by car and coach through hills
To wind up mossy rumor tills
Stare helpless as they—tooth and tale
Scuttled after me,
Well calibrated raw religion
Word murmurs true train trance
Hiccup wheels on rails resounding
—Like a word that you heard in a dream—
Would be-could be-should be
Grow your nonsense thick and leafy
Pack layer layer layer ‘till
No more jealousy just green,
Truth a coal car clatter, perhaps in the grass by the way.
—ECW

Poem 69 Revised

Canaries in the coal mines collect among them the illusion of soot, watching match-side for the flicker of tightly wound impulse: applauding the hillside to crumbs. Canaries in the coalmine, sunlight strike your sanity away, a flightless sightless siren.  Canaries in the coal mine have no perch on branch barbs or street cars, no need to heed trash cans or mini-vans. Brittle beacon in the dim, for a moment I still believed you were a bird.
—ECW

Poem 60 Revised

…more substance.
nothing
comes across
quite like arms
around an epiphany.
I worry
that sorry
uttered tardy
was never enough.
our ether
etched star-ward
blurred bright through
palm proof of happiness.
less than
a fairytale ending.
I regret nothing—
Only wish there had been…
—ECW

Poem 58 Revised

Some days I awake to the sound of my breath and remember
So vivid a vision—one year’s past—of a boy with a bottle
Of rum hum drumming against a summer sky.
These are the leeks that would linger amongst the bones.
These are the bones, I told him, we are the bones.
With sleep in our speech we still whisper of when
We might come back again, finish what we began.
I would write your name across the water if
I could spin webs from my fingers. Would call
Your cross crow to the night, if I did not fear the reply
Ask what became of the body of that boy:
­We are the bones, darling, these are the bones.
—ECW

Poem 56 Revised

Forwarding Address
These are the things that didn’t make it through the mail:
Lifelines and telephone trials
Chords that come and go with complacence
Commonplace apology formalities, embraces
Web worthy searches seizing time.
Our essence won’t fit four cornered as anticipated
Prior posting found it fair to warn the weary:

Attempted—destination not known

ECW

Poem 57 Revised

If time is your master I woul­­d pinch out the stopper and guzzle up the sour saturant
until our minds were free of limits and our limbs weighed well with their burdens.
If time is the price of passion, I might hoard away the barrels mingling of
grape seed and oak, exchanging them only for the moment best articulated
of love. If time is your currency, I would wander the streets co­­­llecting coins
in a long neck bottle until we had enough for one final sip to share. If time
feels feverish on the tongue, spit it quickly in this bucket, a taste should be
enough for the evening, surely too much would send us sideways. When time
could fill your belly and never be enough to quench your sorrow, come wandering
home ward, where the west winds bellow breeze to seize the surly­ soul.

—ECW 

Poem 54 Revised

She kicked down the no trespassing sign
and aerated our photo albums with her high-heels.
No bearded men bard of woeful wandering
only the go forth of American manifest, fools.
We can’t laugh about it yet, but we can have
face powder conversations on the public trans.
If my mother had sat me down to explain integrity
she would have gnawed her tongue off before it reached her cheek.
Me sprawled out street side in the summer heat, I know five people
who would pass by. That’s the truth about growing up. Enemies grow
Out of friends. West coast sentimentality and East coast precipitation
look the same until you dry your sopping sleeves.
Attempting to order coffee just became a contact sport. Counting down
the days until reality sets in; realizing counting is my new reality.
Please, darling, if we’re not going to be chums, 
do try not to poison me… yes that’s what I said, soy milk.

—ECW