Thursday, November 8, 2012

An average failing, a breakdown. The sadness of grace seen fleetingly

How did I know what the sea was, let alone know how to dream of it? 
I had never seen it. 
The water I knew was near stagnant, 
it had no motion unless others waded in, 
pushed their bodies into its warmth.  
How did I know saltwater? 
The runoff of eyes.
But those small dark marks know no motion except down.  

The sea rose and carried me, 
my two-ton body, my rough self. 
My dried mud toes and caked mud tongue.  
I woke up, my equilibrium lost. I could not right myself.

It is hard to keep circling around the thing that happened and not say it. 
But it is also hard to say it. 
So, I circle some more until it tells itself. 
I can trust that it will. 

(More drafts of Land Beast)

Friday, November 2, 2012


Anne seemed diminished and withdrawn, but it was still lovely to hear her read from Nox. She did not talk to the audience in an introduction. Her grey hair was pulled back in a girlish clip near her temple. She wore a baseball cap up until it was time for her to read. She wore all black, just like the last time I saw her. She seemed happiest, most comfortable, when I saw her read in a tiny bar in the East Village. She did not wear all black that day. Her presence is intense and charismatic, no matter her mood.

Alice Oswald was phenomenal. She memorized all thirty minutes of her reading and never once looked down at her paper. Her delivery was dramatic but not hokey. It made me say, "I want to do that when I grow up." I bought her book and read it most of the long, late bus ride back to Baltimore.

My dreams were full of my own language and symbols--a moon with a brass handle, a circle of blacker black behind the moon door.