They say stick to what you know. What I know is this: The lettuce is in the nest. There it is neatly rinsed & folded, like blankets, around our springrolls. Ever since summer started there have been fireworks every night & crazy men being chased around by helicopters. Somebody, I can't see who, is behind the wheel. Is that you?
* * *
The one thing I can’t seem to transcribe is the words. Whether or not I hear them correctly or not, it doesn’t seem to matter. Another statistical occurrence overtakes us in the fast lane. Now that I’ve been removed from the poem can I still call the ocean a lover? There are two people here. One of them looks like me.
Oh God, I hope that’s right.
I just remembered what you said. That rectangular terrain beneath the clover of your eyes? Sure. Hold onto the sun, the scaffolding of clouds. Why not. Compression? Only when I breathe out.
* * *
Suddenly, there is another man here. To say that he reminds me of your husband, is to admit that I can speak with the dead. In order to look in his eyes I had to replace the diagonals of high-fashion with the homespun curtsy of the rocky mountains.
Did I really say lettuce? I meant savoy cabbage.
* * *
Not again T,
Did you hold your breath when you crossed the international date line? Somebody is burning kimchi in the kitchen at the back of the restaurant. All of our eyes water now. It looks like we're crying. This is what happens when we get together. The woman across the table says, “Pass the salsa please.”
This message may contain privileged & confidential material & the information within it is intended only for the use of the addressee named above. As for me, I swim in the steam above your soup.
* * *
Any critical focus at all will gather in the eyes of our softest viewers. I take the photographs while the models pose nonchalantly. I distribute them in emails and on cheap, silvery CD-Rs.
Having been made the subject of our gazes, the mysticism surrounding their beauty evaporates, like mist. Note the lack of circulation in their extremities & how their sentences bifurcate before we can process them.
Something breaks this earth. Another dispatch from the dressing room? Perhaps. Is your husband still here, rattling around in the corners of our memory? It seems that way.
* * *
When startled will you still retreat to the comfort of tilted poplars?
Will you still ram the hooks of one word into another to form the next sentence?
Will you still take the expressway down to the ocean to watch the tide slowly recede?
When I finally do see you again, will you still be bundled in vines of olearias?
* * *
The problem is that when I want to see you I can’t open my eyes. The problem is that when I want to conjure up the memories of you, I dredge up a whole galaxy of black holes with them. Large swaths of fabric that I have no recollection of whatsoever. In them, the helicopters have landed safely back on their pads, leaving the streets to the clean-faced men who randomly appear at our windows.
Needle in the hay? You betcha. The source of light & energy? The sun, if you must know.
Lastly, let us not dream of epiphytes. Let us not dream of divining water from the veins of air & dust. I’ve got a feeling that we’ll be going at it for a while.