The Death of Streaming
The difference between a captive
and an enemy—is in the mind.
Spending half lives near a shipwreck
on the shore of the hippocampus.
Pupils (those eternal twins, pinned)
reside in the eyes—there’s nowhere
else to go—and a ladder with rungs
only fish can climb.
—so many dying salmon
in the shallows.
Made a mark. A little more
of their kind.
That lucky rider.
Coming into the town on his horse, at a trot …
the woman is there, the one he loves, the one
he wants to marry. He bends
from the horse, torso
with arm outstretched, to take her hand.
With practiced hips, she ascends.
are one, now—her breasts to his back, her mouth
to his ear: they marry at Eventide.
The horse carries them away.
on dusty ruts, a cart unbefitting
any sane road, any cobbled stone.
Behind the wagon doors, bodies
piled high. Bodies
bodies with limbs
crossed, or half
Bodies with wounds
that just keep saying
trusting the living
to bear them
entangled—a waxen sheen overriding
everything. The heaviest load carried
The driver stops for a break.
He smokes his cigarette;
takes a drink
from a canteen made of sun
sorghum on silver;
a nun and a nurse
happen by. They peer inside
the wagon; they make the Sign
of the Cross on their breasts
one thousand two hundred
and ninety six
Do not be sad.
The headache of routine will be gone soon.
Surely it is better, this return to the same road
on your own two feet
than to travel as a corpse in a gardener’s wagon …
fortunes are built, in this way, the same road,
the same road day
after day after
a woman is waving at you
from the roadside,
tossing a burning flower or
She is so achingly beautiful,
the pain behind the eyes
Wheels on fire
so fast the mind swims.
The carriage takes a corner;
flaming wheels peel away
like snakeskin, like petals.
The carriage crashes,
fifty feet from a lake.
The husband and wife
The whole world can see them now, and feel for them,
The tiger is asleep; you are careless.
One could even say heedless:
Heedless of life
and the other.
Your foot feels it first: Tiger’s tail!
it is like placing a bare heel on a burning coal.
The beast roars in its dream
and you scamper, you hot foot away.
So close to death, it changes you for days.
In a crouch, he rolled the dice, over and over.
No snake eyes. Do what you want—what you
want what you want, what you
He was in the bistro,
He lost a little scratch,
oh who is any match for
He went out the back way, into the alley:
There, amid the thick fish stench and slick
reams of garbage—was the suitcase.
It was filled with money. The bills, foot-thick,
rubber-banded green bricks.
He travels now. And has given up gambling.
They will never find him.
They will never catch him alive.
It is a time for jubilation; everyone has come.
Let them in!
A bonfire in the causeway; spirits rise and
embers on their way
to the sun.
Not a soul shines by absence; a little fog on the windowsills.
Laughter, and incense. From the latest ante chamber now
the blessed blood reunion shall commence.
She was a rare bird,
and wore an anklet made of green jade.
It looked like a snake climbing
up the inside of her calf; and the men
fell about their own feet, dazed, praying
for Providence, for timing.
Get out of her way!
they said, when she led her kingdom’s
ineluctable fact-finding expedition on
foot, and tattoos
of tearful lizards and blacksmith’s bellows
on the tops of all ten
of her toes.
Even the damaged bolts of silk are valuable.
They are to be shipped, with the utmost care
to a monastery, and a brothel.
Gaze into a puddle after the rain.
Soaked terrain, sure … yet stare
and there is the sky!
and water flows
and fire climbs
Reflection of the fact there is no
The hide of an ox,
an indestructible thing.
Vest worn by a king.
The sun in the Phase of Si …
Heads turned toward the middle spheres of Heaven.
Bright astral light at 2 a.m.
Are your cheeks trembling?
This is half the battle.
Pay attention to the way you open
Make certain that what you have to say
causes no regrets.
Fire gutted the Alexandria Hotel.
He made it out with his money, and a souvenir:
The little flesh-colored Tongue of the Front Desk
The receding waters—fairly flying
across your stairs
like sweat from all
Memories are good.
Lots of scenes …
Streetcars, guillotines …
A man shooting down a bird
with an arrow attached to a string.
He is reeling this bird in
like a fish.
Now, he has gone to the place
where he thought
the bird was.
The empty string he holds
in his shaking hands.
This is grief.
Your captives are awake.
Sensing your worst mistake.
You drank the last bottle
and went to sleep.
Head on your arms. Without a sound
and one by one
your enemies like these
out an open window … they are gone.