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Poetry

Fomitopsis pinicola

Hail, true body.
You are not an echo,
deep in the death-
wood you exalt
your quiet syntheses.
You are not a mirror,
not a fish or a flash.
Toys haunt you
or flee from you,
the bit of escaped gas
that warns the patrons
of the all-night laundry
to slip, one by one,
into the unlit street.
I would sing to you
but singing is wrong,
sometimes—and you
need no lullaby.
You have painted
your nails
the vivid red
chromium dreams
of, when chromium
dreams. It would be
unlike you to pretend
to decoration, being,
as you are, a spirit
encased in a block
of jagged fir.
The ruins of a forest
were the first
cinema, surely.
You are the light
that shines demurely
through the vintage
celluloid.
On the far wall
my image shifts,
shudders, drops.
You are the acoustic
solved for X. The salt
does not much
bother you, or flames
in parliaments.
I could place a stone,
a very small stone,
in your hair, your
outstretched hand.
I don’t. You are not
the recipient
of human passions,
though your praise
ascends in choirs.
It’s as if
you’ve woken
a new breath, not
from the infant body
but from that other,
that stopped clock,
dismissed
from the infirmary.
Truly
magi read in you
a parable of stars
& of the destruction
of stars. I wander
through your house
like the stranger
that I am,
here, & you let me.
Algae tents
along your lower
belvederes, &
you let it. You open
the door to no
church, because it is
the church of no
you occupy
so fully. And isn’t it
fitting, to occupy
a church so fully.
You ring no bells.
You light no censer.
If I pressed my ear
to the nave of you,
what would I hear?
My own heart
beating rapidly,
suspended
within July’s
chronic inflammation.
And you have
children I will never
see, spectral bailiffs.
Is it possible
that your experience
is a form of joy?
Or a word for joy,
in an unspeakable
tongue. Forest
of lapsed breads
entindered,
your skete.
You gentle awning.

 

 


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