Saturday, June 25, 2011

Coast to Coast Blues

Sequoias drum a riff
across the miles
through swaying chants
of cornfields, psalms of snow,

to sea, flat cool-
white sand, jazzed
waves, the syrinx song
of oystercatchers.
Micanopy Palms, oil on canvas
by Mary Bast

Edward Hopper days:
palm trees etched
on turquoise sky, a painting
lonelier than death.

To halt the salty
appetite of blue
I think of
risqué words,

of robin's eggs
and Bessie Smith:
no one to tell
your troubles to.


Wednesday, June 15, 2011

On Reading the Polish Poet

Synesthesia aroused,
I didn't know if I heard his call,
or stepped, half on purpose,
in a mound of fresh buffalo dung.
Either way, he changed
the way my nostrils flared.

Inhaling the view through
his windows, I held on, fearing
the distance might take me
for keeps, continued reading,
stopped assuming anything,
let the word favorite sail away .

Each story was a different taste:
the blue-eyed sound of Thrasher's
dream (You are almost home),
the green relish of this:
People who leave food 
on their plates are lonely.

I sent him the Polish vodka with the bison
on the label, a blade of grass inside,
and wrote "na zdrowie!" because
I wanted to believe the myth
that the golden blade, an aphrodisiac,
would keep him from going extinct.

* ("A Million-Dollar Story" and "Somewhere Geese are Flying")