Saturday, May 26, 2012

Heavy Verbs of Our Movements

—Photo by D.R. Wagner

—D.R. Wagner, Elk Grove

Oh there is a terrible crying on the night air.
Children with dreams caught in their mouths,
Unable to speak.  The thick vengeance of sleep
Full upon them.  Wolves of sleep, cast not thy
Blowing eyes upon our small dominion.

We meant no harm.  We have even erased
Our poor names from the doors of
This kingdom.  Still our ears
Fill with the sounds of sirens and
Fearful gnashing of teeth.  A mad alarum
Chases through the night blood of our cities.
Our pulses spurting madly into its flames.

Oh there is a terrible crying on the night air.
And we softly lie here listening to the
Calm oceans of our breath as it wonders the
Stars with its sweet rhythm.


—D.R. Wagner

The starry rams that vex
The starry plow and trundle
Cross the heavens at the edges of the hex
Signs, tipping huge and noisy beacons
Toward the table of the morning,
Lower head and butt, no warning,
But continue toward the dawn.

Oh sparkle, clean and burning,
Clustered in the arms of the sun
That makes no claim to
Planets. Air like flying junk
That litter space as it races
To the limits of what is known.

The starry rams perplex us
And the starry rams suspect us
Of having forgotten them.
They left us perhaps, we left them
And see them only in the heavens

Or caught inside a wish
They could be less than poetry,
They could be less than verse
Or could become a simple myth
And the whole construction burst.

—Photo Enhancement by D.R. Wagner

—D.R. Wagner

They stepped down the wind.
The air would shimmer as if it understood
Every step they made, the bright
Colors of their words, the stories
Beginning to be told before anyone
Could sit down.

We would find our way below
The bridge.  The dogs would follow
Us, smelling the blood on our clothes,
The smoky smell of gunpowder clinging
To us as if we were the only ones
Who knew its name.  Everything
Had teeth.  Everything had huge eyes.

The moon banks off of the clouds.
“You can’t touch that kind of show, sonny,”
She said, leaning on what used to be
One of the beams that held the moon
Well above the earth.

“None of your smart remarks, either.”
She continued.  “This isn’t that kind of world.
It is supposed to be filled with a love
Nearly impossible to grasp.”

The men are no longer able to find
Their way.  They carve flutes and make drums
To help bring the spirits closer.
Fear rides in a dusk, whirling cobras and searching
For fuel for the fires, cow dung
Or, if they are lucky, wood.

A calm evidences itself in our breathing.
It takes all our effort to keep
The sky spinning out its stars,
Too hot in the coolness of
The moon, charge this venture
With the heat necessary to all imagination,
To create this table we sit at,
Surrounding ourselves with precious
Gifts of red and gold.

The macaques make noises
In the tops of the trees.
They recognize faces from a long time ago
When these places were part of a perfect spirit.


—D.R. Wagner

Before you even feel it.
Before you see the burns.
Before the serious night enters
And hides in the corner of the room

Before the questions start.
Before the walls turn red.
Before the dreams come
Carrying their cloth bags, damp
With slender breathing.

Before these things,
Language will stop.
I will hold you
With my eyes, as if
All other instruments
Were broken and we
Had no right to come here.

The thickness of our bodies
Shall be of great comfort
Then.  The heavy verbs
Of our movements shall
Appear as dance.

Then, I will kiss you
With my lips full upon
All that is your reason.
And we will be transported
Together.  And they who chance to see
These things will be unable to remember
Our names or if we stood
Before them.  For them,
And their time, we shall
Have only this recognition: love.


Today's LittleNip:

—D.R. Wagner

I will tell you all about blue,
But there is little to say
For the ocean and the sky
Say everything for me and I
See it on the smoke rising
From the fires toward evening,
And yes, floating in your eyes. 


Thanks, D.R., for today's gourmet fare, including the roses! For more McKinley park roses, this time from Annie Menebroker and Kathy Kieth, go to Medusa's Facebook page for yet-another new album called, well, More Roses!


 Poet/translator Carlos Reyes and D.R. Wagner