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again with the moon

we act with varying degrees of premeditation,
and you know how the dangerous moon must do what it does.

because of this i can’t tell if the threatened confession —
the siren song of the road —
is more or less than calculated temptation.

i want you to say something true.

i thought we’d forgotten how to dream,
but goddamn if we don’t wake again to the strains of that sweetest song.

Restrain

We test the frozen edge,
and first is a slow,
bruising pain.
We seek to restrain.

We learn —
to sit,
to stand,
to walk.

We watch —
waiting for some new myth
to take hold —
one to believe.

Swallowing the dark night,
we wake shouting.
And it throbs
and trembles
as it recedes.

We beat wings
against
confining wire,
watching the sky
darken and reverse
through dusty windows.

Waking,
sleeping —
nothing is as real.

Still

We live vicariously through these voices —
keeping one eye on the egg of the moon,
poised to wax and hatch the coming year.

Nights like this,
the shards of voices that ring from every quarter
fall quiet.

And we think of all happy endings,
but in silence,
turn away from the golden cup.

We mark time with strings:
woven and knotted and twisted and knitted and spun and electrified and singing and speaking,
a slow fade.

And meantime give voice
to all the always-passing-on bodies of lightness,
always waiting for nights like this —

when the station is closed and quiet,
when all trains are only heard distantly,
when the choir stills its demands,
when the rivers find the confluence,
when all angels lift their wings from our eyes,
when we sleep in the long grass,
when we let it all run away through our hands,
when we forfeit belief and integrate this expansion.

Alone.

Silent.

Awake.

Open.

And still

Coyotes

Outside of dreaming
the coyotes come for me —
and I am running,
outside of dreaming.

Heavy air
beats heart —
a proper pounding
and I am salt.

And unbinding broken wings
find something beneath —
whole and wholesome —
all the fruits
of summer,
of labor —
gifts from the grandmother.

Learn to love
a new fragility
and the full attention
to the present
it demands,
and I am wind —

and calling it
to me
by the braided trees,
by the next turning,
by the crossroads,
by the river.

Our eyes meet
through the tall grass —
me
and the young coyotes —
a mutual blessing.

His teeth
have torn
at my spirit shoes,
and I am no rabbit,
and I am no fleetfoot,
and I am no prey —
only the wind,
picking up speed.

Stand

The woman speaks
of the futility of hope —
the necessity of
some substitute
that cannot so easily
be lost.

I wait for the clock
to sanction correspondence.
But then
just can’t bring
myself to it.
How you hurt,
without knowing you hurt.

Watch the moths
beat their wings
against the glass.
And wait.
And wait.
And wait.

Should turn them away.
Should turn off the lights.
Should find my pillow,
and maybe sleep.
But wait.
And wait.
And pray for the sense
to turn away
from this suspense.

Because she was right.
To hope is useless.
Wiser to take up these weapons,
assume the warrior’s pose.
Hope is useless.
And waiting, pointless.

And if you can remember
to forget,
perhaps someday
you might forget
to remember.

In the ninth place

Day approaches.
And dirt
smells sweet
so we seek
to sink.

Bury my mouth
that my words
might be silent.

Bury my heart
that it might remain
untouched.

Bury my hands
that they might
not mend.

Bury my wisdom
that I might
not know.

We no longer bother
with a counting
of years.

Let them roll
deep beneath the dirt
down to the bedrock below.

No turning back.
Not now.

And I am sorry
that it goes too slow.

And I am sorry
that it goes so fast.

Strike

Winter’s left me dry,
yet I find
this electricity
irresistible.

You flash down
like lightning,
without warning
or intention of harm.

All my reason
is burned up to ashes.
But still,
I search the sky —

not for a sun
to break the gray,
but for another
banking cloud.

You’ve stricken me
well and true,
and still, I’m on my knees,
begging for more.