TINGE Magazine - http://www.tingemagazine.org

Issue 6

from Leafmold

 · Poetry

Rapt yet comatose: I am a large, grayish-orange rock collecting birdshit. The bad sports clear out the rainforests, flood the deserts, and leave us to witness the last dominant predators devour everything. Ripped jeans and waterproof boots—a pact with the far-reaching clouds, a pace set by prehistoric wolves, the mechanized spirit of contemplation alighting in a twisted conifer black with March rain, and beyond it all, blue sky spilling as if from a ripped bodice. A sacred day for the burning of fallen sticks, for the setting of nets for ghosts in the yard. Ignoble dream: an earlier self tracking sludge through the hall finds the landing crowded, parfleches stuffed with rotting bear parts. Still winded from his ride, Paul Revere hunches over, strips from the waist, and wrings the piss from his breeches. Simultaneity: the dog and I are admiring the strata of cocaine limber and iridescent behind the snowclouds when the neighbor’s motion-light flares awake. He is taking is dog out, too. We’re lawn in the dark. Had it been daylight and each noticing the other, we would have certainly exchanged waves.


Soon they’ll put a tax on warmth. Our vacuum rests standing: a colossus in the corner between dresser and curtains that the dog distrusts with a finality we equate to holy war. One little way of the world. I’ll be on my… Effigy of duck, shirt ghosting doorknob, never-ending text of dust. The night was suddenly good—all that wine lashed around my ankles. Believe in only the protection provided by colors—never wear the same set of clothes twice. These are the words of an American. O museum lobby, O pendulum knocking a peg over every five minutes, O hour sat watching. Devotions from the Temple of Censored Ecstasies: There’s a party in my. Where is my. You’re always on my. Rain, I don’t. I get lost in my. Let me know your. Turn off your. Suspicious. Set on you. River take my. Today my friend Bryan brings a box of records he found in a library basement: capturings of poets (some pressed in astonishing transparent red vinyl): Frost, Snodgrass, Moore, Lowell, Pound, Kunitz, cummings, Graves, dozens more. Find a lodge: rolling hills of gray, a ready dog, sunrise talk over sunrise tables, low brightening sounds. Howdy, ghosts.


Sweeping confetti the next morning: dreams of terrors, fathers and sons, beheadings at dawn. Honor is a thing that howls in the throat—silent as the brain making three million figures in a row: motion, nation, thought, sensation, impulse, reaction, understanding, rejection, bliss, exhaustion, execution, sloth, action, caution, catharsis, fear, regret, instinct, sympathy, indifference, lust, chivalry, embarrassment, déjà vu, hallucination, clarity, age, pity, fire, stone, wind, tree. An inch of dust and little more. A hand clutching a step—hand over hand into the humid stars. Recalcitrance beckons from within toothsome joys of lethargy. Hold it right there. I turn to Big Foot dead on his back in the snow of Wounded Knee—it’s too much for one consciousness to bear: if I don’t close the book I’ll lose myself. And now there is nothing to say. Nothing, I say. Changing your mind leads to new problems and the past is listening to laughter through a keyhole: yet another hell and yet another spirit twisting through it. I’m blind—can’t see morning, can’t see birds, can’t see pride. Bless you, though, for trying to show me.


Copyright © 2017 TINGE Magazine. All rights reserved.