Friday, 29 January 2016

from Blackwater Quartet, selection 62

Engaging Venus

Oboes quail-cry. The music leans into a risen ether.
Low notes rupture, a softness
of flesh on razor wire. Are you listening?

The shape of your pulse is made and handled.
It supports the roof. The lawnmower chugs with it.
The universe spills across the table.

I suggest blue to match your eyes, blue paler
than the late sky’s crust of blue, a lateness of blue
engaging Venus: a held breath and then the night.

Money counted into stacks, wobbly coin chimneys
anticipate the city where I died. I lose count
of the cities, conquer karma, goldfish suns.

We ride up-country. The map is in my head.
The snow swirls. Which way now? Each shadow
longs for a name, hangs hawkish in the wind.

The mind is changed, courted. I confess, the stars
in my care have disappeared; nothing else of interest.
Pinwheel galaxies trail ghostly light, bright bangles snuffed.

Fields burn, smoking stubble stinking as it blackens.
Field-hands man the firebreaks. One man, asleep,
sinks in an ocean, hears no blazing birds.

Suitcase on the landing, the house folded with the shirts,
life is full of such extravagance. A house not there
and still these rarefied excursions: whatever next?

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