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love and wild boars. [19 Dec 2008|12:14am]
Love and Wild Boars

I read in the newspaper that there are wild boars, a pandemic of boars from the forests of Brandenburg, in the streets of Berlin. They come out at night, snuffling in the green spaces, feeding on compost, stepping with ungraceful menace in the paths of cars; males can weigh up to two hundred pounds and thus they interrupt the flow of traffic in the guts of nocturnal Berlin. They're the only thing I can think of to compare my passions to--snorting, inconsiderate, with teeth hanging over their lips and rank odors, stout, ungainly bellies, persistent hooves. How I wish to go about my business, but I am hopelessly interrupted, like those hapless drivers hanging out of their cars at dusk, at midnight, a little haggard and all disbelieving, peering at the carnage in the teeth of the radiator grille, all that unfortunate, costly damage, snuffed life, and tangled metal…

I'm exhausted by these little accidents...Collapse )
2 bitten apples| fall

this is kind of old, but i kind of like it [30 Jul 2008|04:26pm]
Moon!

Teach me to hang, a sphere
of air unhindered,
to return from the dark
with aplomb, to cool,

a nomad, in patches of sky.
Teach me me to hide my face,
I want it hidden! Make us
a street of our own
on wretched nights.

Help me to breathe
silver as cats sleep
on cobbles and water
in pipes.
fall

four poems about my year in Israel [26 May 2008|05:05am]
Out of the blue sky newer...Collapse )
fall

To the Soldiers on Bus 961 [26 Mar 2008|01:12pm]
There's a rose in your cheeks and a squint to match
and your gun falls against the window when you laugh,
making a small sound, like the small hands of the rain.
Your side against my arm is warm; the big Jordan mountains
stretch their heads up to peck at the mist
as it lessens slowly and the motor frets,

But I won't give you my love, Asaf, not even if you ask
for it. Not even if you show me your village
on the map. I won't love your blue eyes or the way you arrange
yourself on the seat beside me. Not your ammo belt, or braces.
But I will lift my hand to pluck the button from your sleeve
while you're turned away.
1 bitten apple| fall

apocalyptic poem? formal, rhyming [28 Jul 2007|10:18pm]
Like Gauguin’s flush-limbed girls
We walked naked in the yellow light.
We locked our eyes on the rivers
And kept awake all night.
We lost more ground, and more,
the water eating crescents up the shore.

You crushed your hand to my mouth:
“Each sound in you is mine!”
The water spread like mercury,
Soundless and fine.
Before us the mountains stood
Cloaked in their fur.
How the sun turned you red,
how it coarsened your pallor!

Every place we lay...Collapse )
1 bitten apple| fall

edit on previous post! [19 Jun 2007|03:07am]
Union Square Park Late in August

Even the cool shadows shudder
in a furor of doors.
Even the stoops are trembling.
A red-headed girl leaves a man
and he slumps on the bench as if hanged.

Ash is molting down the buildings on the breeze.
At the market the vendors hawk puckered melons.
I lie under the stone legs of the Marquis de Lafayette
and his sword's shadow slices my belly.

Out from me curl the tailpipes
of the fearsome and particolored city.
The man on the bench cups his mouth
with both hands to keep from rising.
fall

super rough draft (union square park poem) [18 Jun 2007|03:09am]
With the city sweating and dissolute
and noise lowering in hot sheets, and ash
molting down the buildings on the breeze,

the skateboarders keep up their brave games
and give clear whoops atop their arcs;
the one-armed man with a djembe
is half-part of this dance of slides and gutters,
and the beautiful girls give off heat
as they pass in their dresses.

I lie under the stone legs of the Marquis de Lafayette
and his sword's shadow slices my belly.
At the market the vendors hawk puckering melons.
The trucks curl sound out their tailpipes
and roar as they pass.

Even the cool shadows shudder
in a constant furor of doors.
On the world whines. On it gutters.
Even the stoops are trembling.
A red-headed girl leaves a man
and he slumps on the bench as if hanged.
fall

fiction [10 Jun 2007|02:11am]
"Passent les jours et passent les semaines
Ni temps passé
Ni les amours reviennent
Sous le pont Mirabeau coule la Seine"
-Guillaume Apollinaire

New Bridge. Four-thirty. Birds wheeling in clumsy formations around bell-shaped clouds. One of my feet is bare, and I can feel the tar on the planks sticking to its sole. The other has a sneaker on. Sock balled up in my hand, second sneaker a smelly pendant around my neck, I stop walking and turn outward. The Hackensack River plods on beneath me. A beer can bobs, ducks, and recedes. The banks are scrubby with half-dead horsetail, and a smell of rotting groundhog is heavy on the wind. It's ugly but it feels like home.

If I were to keep on walking, I'd cross the bridge and see a big expanse of soggy low-tide marshland, and a little cement platform below an arch of thorns. I would recall more strongly the years I sat and watched the turtles mate and the red factory across the river steam and thunder—and, even more strongly, I'd recall the year I shared joints with a doughy, doughty boy, our legs dangling inches above the water. But for now I'm okay with resting my elbows on the cold rail and watching the debris race by, letting the air ripen in my nose.

It's getting colder, though, the wind skimming and scything and pricking my bare toes. I narrow my eyes: though I haven't yet crossed the bridge, I can nearly see the boy I recall so fondly, marijuana smelling up his jeans, hair a-shiver in the wind, and myself, seventeen, barefoot, hanging on his soft arm and sighing for the kind and violet-colored world. The music sounded sweet and the sky sealed us off from danger. It fit neatly over the trees like a lid. Through the slats of the bridge, I can nearly see that first moment of milky and fearless nakedness shining through years and the murky skin on the river and the sulks and recriminations that came after-- the holistic moment of impact, fingers on back and soul on soul. There were stifling afternoons to follow, and life in a bad, slack, ransacked body, but those were instants of true and shining self-habitation. Effulgent, indulgent, and long done.

I can still recall the notions of seventeen...Collapse )
fall

The Dream (Israel) [08 May 2007|06:17pm]
[ mood | crushed ]

I can barely admit I have this dream, it flutters around my head like a bad hairdo, but sometimes I still dream about my first boyfriend...Collapse )

2 bitten apples| fall

yuri gagarin and me (revised from prev. entry) [20 Apr 2007|06:00pm]
[ mood | sad ]

Yuri Gagarin and Me

Down by the empty shops
in nothing but socks
you laid your palm
on the bald front seat,
clicking the seatbelt button like a telegraph machine
sending a desperate message into space--
but we were the cosmonauts there, lonely and proud,
cold ground behind us;
your hair red in the light,
your eyes hollow with stars...

Then you cast
me out to tumble with the bad milk and spent bottles.
You drove off in your little grey dome.
You heard the singing of the black lakes in your ears.
They were calling you to distant spaces.

I only died a little bit.
The blood ran thick and unquiet through me.
But I was already mapping the terrain of a new planet,
gargantuan and blue,
where even the wheedling noise of the satellites couldn't reach.

fall

new bridge road [15 Apr 2007|11:58pm]
down by the empty shops
in little but socks
you laid your palm
on the bald front seat,
clicking the seatbelt button like a telegraph machine
sending a desperate message into space.
We were cosmonauts there. your hair
red in the light and your eyes
two pits for stars.

then you set
me out with the bad milk and the bluebottles:
"my curdled girl-
here are the flies you'll lure with your clotted call."

you drove off in your little grey dome.
you heard the singing of black lakes in your ears.
they were calling you to distant spaces.

I only died a little bit.
the blood ran thick and unquiet through me.
but I had things to do.
I didn’t have time for you.
3 bitten apples| fall

The Girl Who Wasn't Goldman [13 Feb 2007|09:05am]
I'm going to charge you with all the bright humanity in me and explain
how everyone here,
naked under steel
and serge and desk lights,
is sacred, bodies holy,
and their fervid fervid unions are going to raise us up forever,

But your lips, turned at sour corners, won't tremble.
The hot lights on your unlikely flesh, the thin
fur on the indent in your jaw, will burn,
And I will turn, reddening and quiet,
into a morning drowned
in the rot of its promise.
fall

rough draft (Eclogue for the Moderns) [09 Feb 2007|08:54am]
[ mood | exanimate ]

From where I stand, everything is bright and transient. Words and music spiral thickly down behind my eyes, corkscrewing soft and relentless towards flickering uniformity. Five hundred artists sing their muted souls out and the static, thick and sweet, pours and swirls down, down, down through me. Too many gestures for me to name, the beckonings, usherings, summonings of a hundred thousand Sirens, shift and glimmer behind my eyes. And behind everything, like a dark form moving, the desire to lay his head on my breasts, feel his hands link around my waist, and lie there. Just lie.

Enough with this urbane, melodic solitude! A thousand pop-songs’ worth of lo-fi, assonant loneliness; pinlights; grey cities. Instead, instead, I want an eclogue!—

Make me a cherry-cheeked shepherdess, my full form swelling in gingham, a flutter of grass-damp hands and dirt on my hems. And in the barn, while half of creation lows and caterwauls, something straining and finite, his tow-head of hair spilling roughly over mine. The idea of this—very remote: a shepherdess: absurd! But anything is better than 3 a. m. aloneness, the swell in the throat, the desperate text-messages. There is nothing noble in bleached-out skin, the opening and closing of lights, luminous and inconstant as the blinking eyes of frogs; in the endless numbers of us, feeling an inexplicable paucity of something in ourselves -- the edge of us dulled by all our replicated sensations.

Give me, then, my gap-toothed shepherd! Green slopes, milling white shapes like the teeth from a thousand jaws, browsing and chewing... laxity; empty space; and the constant spiral ceases. I look at the one I love and at myself, crooks propped in our hands, like a couple of dolls—ridiculous. But the wind whips at our hands, feet, faces, its thin screech erasing, erasing, erasing, until I shuck my flickering cocoon: until I have severed myself from the millions of lonely people moving from room to room in the darkness, far from the stars. And it's you I love, with your broad, round, wind-chapped shoulders, and your big white arms. And the wind in the sour first grass.

fall

revised version [15 Jan 2007|09:35pm]
I would like to be the sort of girl who doesn't talk,
Who is still and sharp,
Lips calcified by the perfection of an urge
that gives no quarter;
When she surrenders at last to love
Her passions gather in a dark cloud of atoms
Rising and rising in her limbs.

Instead I am a sputtering machine of passions,
At times I roar, at times I mutter,
Belching forth always a curled black plume
of ambling, garish thought;
Mornings I swear I won't say a word until lunch
I am a fountain of words before breakfast;
Broad and yielding, I snack, I bluster,
I crow, I cringe, I fever to expand.

I wince at the brevity of the peerless mind,
I clutch to myself all that is fierce and disordered;
Jowls trembling, sunk in weakness,
I dream of creating a new self from a handful of bones.
1 bitten apple| fall

new poem! feedback pls [10 Jan 2007|12:03pm]
I would like to be the sort of girl who doesn't talk,
Who is still and sharp, whose brilliance never cools,
Lips calcified by the perfection of her urge,
Which is singular, complete, and gives no quarter;
When she surrenders at last to love,
She falls voraciously and wholly to it;
And all her passions gather like dark cloud-heads,
Peaked, silent, barreling to the point of storm.

Instead I am a sputtering machine of passions,
At times I roar broadly, at times I mutter,
Belching forth always a filthy froth
of lax, untutored, ambling, garish thought;
Mornings I swear I won't say a word until lunch
I am a fountain of words until lunch;
Broad and yielding, I snack and natter,
I wince, I cringe, I fever to expand.

And I shrink always from the pain of cutting out
the fatty flesh of all I ought not
Do, or say, the shapelessness of my desire,
I wince at the brevity of the peerless mind.
I clutch to myself all that is fierce and disordered;
My jowls tremble; I am sunk in weakness;
I dream of creating a new self from handfuls of bones.
1 bitten apple| fall

'Reading Robert Lowell' [04 Dec 2006|03:09pm]
Lowell, ‘wincing for pleasure
And suffocating for privacy,’
Tautly howling of his imperfect life—
How he suffered for each wife!—
Died at last going to Hardwick in New York.
Hemmed in by the precision of his verse,
I spend nights billeted with his books—
His coarse, well-moving ocean of a voice,
His monuments to choice.
Swallowed, I curl myself up, hand to gut.

This is the pothole of my age:
Mad, hot and dumb, I sink down into sleep,
Sprawled like a drunkard, forearms on the page.
4 bitten apples| fall

"hip jewish spring poem"? mostly just bad [26 Nov 2006|01:38am]
[ mood | aggravated ]

"Driving through MA he frowned
all through one county--
I got it out of Phyllis,
he lived there ten years on a commune
running the TV station. You know
I never know what's behind his googly gaze.
You'd think he'd tell me that--his daughter."
She shoves her lips out, gaze to the window,
squints at the boughs
of budding trees. I eye the oily fall
of her hair, thinking of my uncle
throwing his brother's dog out to the street
one Passover. I can believe this about him.
The things we tell: my uncle,
top tax attorney in the state,
pinching his lips and snatching up the grater,
mounding bitter root--
And we omit:
limber Dan mucking chickens,
cooking for seventy,
and, nights, heading to the ACTV office,
the square relentless light of the camera
burrowing into his brow,
sealing his secrets, its harsh white promise
constantly renewed.

fall

[27 Oct 2006|08:50am]
In a series of film stills and stereoscopic views, I recall my father, hairy and bold, standing resolute on our front stoop; my father, hands on his spine on the floor in a spasm; my father, dancing over the stairs. Skin grey-cast, thick arms supple as old softballs, he grins. He sings a bad song about RNA transcription. He tells a dark joke and doesn’t slap his knees. My father in a 1978 slide, holding spears up beside Malaysians. An old woman with loose gums baring her teeth at my father in a picture, a loose-titted woman with a toddler behind her. My father in thick glasses with bad rims. My father now in fancy frames. My father’s large nose and ringed lips.

All these are conjectures about old pictures. My father is a good man with a head like a block and few social graces. His teeth are terrible. He has a series of white shirts and ill-fitting suits: he is the most compact 200 pounds I’ve ever seen. “There are few greater joys in life,” he says, “than coming to the basement to work out on the treadmill and seeing your daughter there already.”

Yes, says his fat daughter...Collapse )
5 bitten apples| fall

(visual) art [16 Sep 2006|10:40pm]
Pointillism, self-portrait from awhile agoCollapse )
fall

[13 Sep 2006|07:24pm]
[ mood | stressed ]

1918 he was born
the Great Influenza Epidemic
& after
stuffed Death
turns heavily from my Father

October.
my father in the square
wet cap at his feet
it's easy
(87¢/hour)
my father

rag collar
bow-legged
sick girls, white and warm

1957 i am born
and i suckle the ragged wrecked wrists of my father

fall

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