March 14, 2013

a view back to when...

photograph of Mills College Office in the 1880’s

for the benefit of charity

she said relax
let my mind wander a bit
could I smell the gardenia
in the hallway
in a vase
on the little table
on the way in

see if I could close my eyes
and petal fall into the reaches of water
I don’t quite understand her
but I go along anyway
my mind sometimes, is a lost cause
pursuant for original thought
a species gone extinct a long time ago
right around when we fully industrialized
this world and populations exploded
like red algae blooms in warm shallow seas 

I ask her
why do repeating integers numb me
into counted piles of off color aphorisms
and poetic clever ruination
disguised as my severed limbs

thank god for baths, she said
you forgot how to relax
you forgot how to think
just feel yourself crawling while floating
with your fingers full of clench and glass
porcelain watching how little emotion
you have left, everyone will be ready 
to pull the plug

I remember, little pieces of something trailing
from those still ambling on the street
as my taxi pulled up to her place
it was as if I could see their lives
in vapor exhales, slow jets and mechanical toys
as if they were constantly wanting 
someone to play with their articulations
I tell her I could draw a picture 
of when I used to be them
when I thought of myself as worthy
of burning down the museums

I wonder if she knows
if she sees, I keep my emotions
locked behind glass now
I tell her I am afraid
of what success means
she said she already knew that
I tell her every scent
seems to knows my name
wants only to tame the spine
into cut thirsty stems
they solicit me
see if I could showcase
my wild parts by holding tight
to the loosening hinges
for a bit longer

why am I here, I ask her
she says because even if I
could count every star
and all that knowledge contains
my silence is a finite cause
she says, I seek
the infinities inside
our pocketed secrets
and whether I am
wealthy or poor
I would always want
to give everything away
and whether I am
alive or dead
that is who I am


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