Sunday, September 19, 2010

118. The First Related to the Second by the Way in Which Each is Simply the Same

in a sense
this is a
letter, as if
sent to you,
which it is,
so I mean
this in the
sense that
it actually
happened
as I had said
it had (or
given that I
have not
yet finished
it, in the
sense that
I will)
the demands of time, and the basil blooms in tall stalks,
giant great blue heron flew over me today and it was grey,
overcast bird in the overcast sky, and paint dries, paint
dries into sand brown on the just-painted porch and stairs

in the proper,
if there were
such a thing,
way, a letter
would be a
document of
address to
one person
or sometimes
many (even
Corinthians),
and this letter
meets that
minimal goal
of an epistle,
but it is some-
thing else,
an epistolary
poem, so it
must speak
to you to speak
through you
if bourbon gives you a headache drink a peaty scotch,
a good enough rule, the bricks lay scattered along
the new fenceline, eutrophication in writing, too many
words for an idea to break through, hole in the fence

think of
this as a
record, a
document,
evidence
of a saying
of words,
but rather,
than as in
your archives,
an expression
towards some-
one already
dead, think of
it as words
to the living,
the record
before the
archives
becomes
dishwasher run but a dryer is going, sound of a button
hitting the metal drum, dark like night because it is
night, dogs have taken to sleeping, I live under maples,
and there is no sky because evening’s blotted it out

pressure
in a letter
to be who
you are,
to say what
you mean,
to mean
what you
must, to
exist not
as a simple
concept but
as a real
human,
tooth and
bone, some
thing solid,
persistent
an archives keeps forever something that won’t last
quite that long, what persists must be handed forward
in time, in the form of rumor, by tongue, kept alive by
the act of living, I breathe in through my nose and out

all a letter
has is words
unless I draw
a picture on
it, and then
it is still a
letter and
the picture
is just a word
within a
sequence of
words, if it
is a picture
of a fox the
word it might
be is fox, if
it is a scribble
the word it
might be is
maelstrom
white paint on the fingers of the hand, brown paint on the toes
of the foot, slight stinging on the tongue from food and drink,
every light out but this one so I can see what I’m thinking,
we take in food and air and drink to turn them into words

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