Monday, June 13, 2005

Chaos is Only Theory (except in my office...)

Happy Birthday, Colette! Colette Jonopulos, co-editor of Tiger's Eye: A Journal of Poetry, has a Big Birthday today. Here—have one of her poems, on me:

—for JoAn, who still doubts

Parked at the base of the butte, I empty my pockets
into the car’s plastic console—a receipt from Baja
Fresh, dimes and pennies, a business card from
Wheel Works bicycle shop, a paper clip. Up the

slope of the butte, past ferns and Douglas-firs, the
trail spatters mud onto my pant legs, the climb a kind
of penance for too many hours seated at my desk, the
whir of imagination stilled by television. Massive

boulders, the color of winter, lead upward, their white
and black veins—a child’s directionless crayon pressed
deep into rock. Sky widens at the summit—the god
of effort satisfied with gasps for breath. I’m offered

a 360 degree view of farmlands—flat sheet of blue
to the west, football stadium due north, the campus
a blur of brown where learning comes while seated
in plastic chairs under florescent lights. From here

it is easy to assume order, that humans are loyal like
dogs, chaos is only theory, what we write will last
beyond our promised disintegration, the sweet
emptiness of our becoming. There is comfort in rock’s

warmth, the coupled sway of wildflowers, this
persistent nothingness I’ve stumbled over. Far below,
the copper coin has stopped spinning in its plastic
tray, Lincoln facing right, flat on his side, and silent.


The Tiger has been inspired by the Snake to set up its own blog: Check it out.

Don't forget the VYPER deadline June 16 (Thursday)—the teenzine of poetry from kids 13-19. Send 3-5 poems to or, name, address and age. Artwork, too.

And keep writing. What we write will last beyond our promised disintegration...