MORITURI

Inside
the cloud of unknowing,

the known and the unknown,

and an acid rain
of preparing and forgetting
the names of the seasons

and the names of the uninvited guests
knocking at the doors, calling at the windows,
dangling from the rafters, shaving in the mirror.

Our vines have raisins
where there once were grapes
and the promise of wine
instead of vinegar and water,

and a drop of blood for every plague,
every first-born, every locust

in a feast of locusts.

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Originally published in Corvus Review, Fall Issue, 2015

QUADRILLE

“For some of us are out of breath, And all of us are fat!’
‘No hurry!’ said the Carpenter.They thanked him much for that.”
~Lewis Carroll, The Walrus and the Carpenter

Music is invisible to the eye,

but not to ears that hear
the voice of the shepherd
calling to his father

from behind a tree
with roots in heaven
and hands in hell,

digging for truffles
like a rutting pig,

or cabbages and kings
or walruses and carpenters
playing with each others’ pearls
in their oyster bed,

inviting lobsters to the dance
from their oyster bed:

“Will you, won’t you,
will you, won’t you,
will you join the dance?”

 

SARABAND

listening:

give and get
and take

what’s yours
and not

yours and theirs
and his and hers.

(and a fallen tree
blocking the road
to there and back)

far
far
back

from where you came
skipping and singing
and smelling the roses
cluttering the gutter

this morning.