Friday, May 11, 2001

The Auroras of Chosen Things
- for Wallace Stevens

As if what is beautiful can never be told ....

I will be her next light,
closer than dreams to the sleeper lie

the forest, remembering rain
as I remember her attendant hands.

The beginning of pain is like new flowers
and the moon is in the season of my heart.

Poetry makes no bed like love
her draperies; the auroras of chosen things.

The figure executes a transparent dance
against the limits of her form.

An act of love is an act of poetry
a sense of sunbeam, the lure of a blue

that bears the cut of the moon.

Thursday, May 10, 2001

In Your Mortal Name

- after Neruda

In your mortal name the light falls all around you.
Absorbed, pale and gentle enough for you now
against the dusk’s aging petals
which turn in your wind.

Speechless, my friend
alone in a loneliness that is the death of time
and is filled with visions of fire;
the pure inheritance of a ruined day.

The sun leaves branches on your dress
at night, the huge roots
twist and wind in your soul,
and everything hidden there blooms;
a pale blue town appears
nurtured, as a newborn, by your dreams.

O rich, magnetic, spectacular slave
of gold and black circles : turning
get up and emancipate your creation;
a life that succumbs to flowers
and is rich with tears.
Leaning Into Afternoon

-after Neruda

Leaning into late afternoon, my sadness, your oceanic eyes
stir me to such altitudes, my arms like wings of cloud.

I am spinning out signals to your absent eyes
which vanish like the sea at its edge.

Your solitude, like a tolling bell,
a distant dream emerges, a shore of white stones.

Leaning into late afternoon, my sadness
recedes like a tide before your oceanic eyes.

Nightbirds fly towards the evening’s first stars
they strive for them like souls full of love.

The night runs like a wild horse
spreading its blue mantle across the plain.
Drunk with Trembling

after Neruda

Drunk with trembling and big kisses
the festival; the velvet roses of speech
torrid; having the little death of the day
cement and solidify our frenzied marriage.

Pale, almond-scented; delicious water
cruising the beautiful colors and climates of your nudity
clothes; lost in a mist of sounds
a smoking wave; our abandon.

Come, hard passion, mount me, be one
lunar, solar, fire and ice; reconciled
sleeping in the mouth of our fortunes
hips like islands; white and sweet as fresh fountains.

Tremulous night soaking my shirt with its kisses
crazy with what she bears; electric gestures
heroic world, divided into different dreams
and I am drunk with the roses.

Racing waters, represent me; escaping in waves
your supine body submitting to my arms
like an infinite fish fixed to my soul;
quick and slow in the energy beneath the sky.
Body of a Woman

after Neruda

Body of a woman, white self, white muscles,
you are part of the world, and you move within her
my body of long thirst you slake
and your altar is the fountain of the earth.

Solitude; like a tunnel of my foolish fear
in my night without birds, an invasion of thought
to sober my smile as a threat might
like an arrow in my back ; a splinter in my foot.

But this hour is love’s vengeance.
skin of the body breached, milk; flowing fire
ah the song of the skin ! ah the eyes of oceans !
ah the rose of your hips ! ah your sad slow voice !

Body of a woman, my woman of persistent grace.
My thirst, my endless hunger, my unchosen path !
Dark river, slake my eternal thirst,
and give me rest. I have loved you forever.