vessel

don’t believe

the mirrors—

 

except in cars;

and even then,

 

in moderation.

i’m headed out

 

into the 3d world:

where i’m visible

 

in full—not just from

the front and torso up.

 

i need to feel real

pages in my hands,

 

real road under

my wheels. i’m

 

listening to tori,

trying to feel some-

 

thing. the truth is,

i don’t like music with

 

words anymore. there

are too many words in

 

the world. this is probably

how some people feel about

 

poetry; it’s how i feel about

poetry, sometimes. and yet,

 

here i am adding to the heap.

in my dream, my mom and dad

 

are young and happy. they look

like they did on their wedding day:

 

beaming and laughing and

of a piece. but we are also there,

 

we three girls. they’re drinking

red wine and being the life of the

 

dinner party: a glimpse into the

before. in another dream, i am

 

being assaulted by a robotic arm

with a giant camera eye. it’s still

 

attached to the corner where the wall

meets the ceiling as it roves over my

 

body, pressing down hard on me

with a hum. somehow it’s the whole

 

length of me. i think of the incubus

in florida, but after. in the moment,

 

in the dream, i’m just trying to

cry out for help—but it may all be

 

stuck in my head. there’s a loud

alarm going off that i think i’ve

 

triggered. how do dreams

become 3d? or is it all just

 

smoke and mirrors? i am a

vessel of shifting memory:

 

moving from bliss to terror to

bliss again. the wide extremes of

 

being. maybe this is how we

learn the middle, the balance.

 

as i sit and think of the years,

the sharp ache is finally gone—

 

but in its wake, a deep

loneliness that has

 

learned to expect,

and love, solitude.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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we climb the continual

we are each born into this world with a dream.

when we first arrive, we know it to our core.

 

as time—and we—unfold, we begin to forget;

it burrows back down into our recesses.

 

sometimes small glimpses will come to the

surface, if we allow space: a painted picture, a

 

sculpted pot, a sleeping story. unmet dreams

follow us en masse down dark side streets,

 

find us in all-night conversations,

meet us under a portal of stars.

 

we climb the continual spiral—

toward voice, birth, source, love.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

favorite part of speech

i walk beside the river in the snow.

my cat curls beside me on the couch.

 

we are in this world to rub up

against other things and beings.

 

we define ourselves

in relation to others.

 

try to describe who

or where you are

 

without prepositions:

the words of relation-

 

ships. even an

island is in the sea,

 

far from land and

longing for habitation.

 

jump into the water

and see where it takes

 

you. cast off your

past, the weight of

 

mistakes, the heavy

anchor of indecision.

 

it is time to sail, to

take flight, to feel the

 

wind in your wings:

in, on, through, between.

 

 

 

we are december

while we were away,

winter happened.

 

i came home to fresh

frost on the grass.

 

we share this set of days,

this slow creep toward

 

the center of the snow

globe maze. at any moment,

 

a child’s hand can scoop

up the glass and shake us into

 

oblivion. her delight is

our delay. in the falling

 

flurries, i find you: wrapped

in your mother’s red scarf—

 

holding the hand of time.

we are the child, the snow,

 

the mother, the scarf;

we are december.

 

 

ride

there you are

up on the north hill.

 

i can see you

through the veil,

 

embarking on our

beautiful horse.

 

we share that

mustang machine;

 

we groom her,

we love her,

 

we feel her power

under and through us.

 

we take her down

the same paths:

 

looping in, around,

up, between.

 

but we can never ride

her at the same time.

 

across the time-miles,

 

i feel you in the saddle,

in the reins, in the hard

 

handle of the brush as

i bring her to a soft shine.

 

i manifest you in the

flowing grass, the

 

wild wind, the

impeccable trees.

 

we move seamlessly

through the falling leaves

 

as if coated with fluid.

 

with each ride

we lift the scrim

 

a bit more

to see within;

 

we speak our

vision into being.

hush and hum

the poem is a

prayer

 

you write all alone

in your closet.

 

it fights

you;

 

it demands

a blessing

 

from the

shit.

 

inside time’s

attenuated tip,

 

you wrestle

with the

 

wooden chest

of your heart:

 

all the

kindling,

 

the hush

and hum,

 

the red

sharp,

 

the perfect

death.

 

deeper still,

you move

 

through the

electric blue

 

darkness, the

great lost-ness,

 

a tiny sign of life

hunting another.

 

you see the

silver sparks;

 

they brush up

against you—

 

but you cannot

feel them.

 

you are here

but not here.

 

you remember

your father saying

 

every thing is

going to be okay

 

with his ragged

breath and big

 

chemo eyes.

even then,

 

on the edge

of death,

 

he was full of

hills and hopes.

 

now, the

big banyan

 

and creeks and

deer and wolves

 

tell you: it is time

to move into your

 

own life. it is time

to stop inhabiting

 

family history,

family religion,

 

family memory.

put whiskey in

 

your coffee and go

out into the world.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

the opposite of time

there are no synonyms for

you; you are one of a

 

kind. in my dreams, it is

so clear: what i want.

 

it is the meeting of

body and mind.

 

my mind does not

leave my body; she

 

takes her along,

loves her the whole

 

stay. being asleep

is the real awake:

 

the opposite of time.

 

while not asleep,

i’m in my own way.

 

i hold my blueberry coffee;

i stand in the hospital corridor

 

with my throat shut. the

sickness perseverates

 

in the mouth, jaw,

throat, chest, gut;

 

the non-words

in duress.

 

truth

is terror—

 

a forever

pain.

 

but in dreams,

it is made into

 

beauty: alchemy

as it should be.

 

i go to sleep under

a November tree,

 

between the

bright carpet

 

and brighter

hangings, and

 

meet you there.