Cheers

Li Bai and Du Fu, two poets who have never
been through my kitchen, crest then reside

on recent earth, scratching out claims to
stand above, scrubbing away at some

tumult, a whole afternoon long drinking in
Heaven—fighting back, and against

black Plutonic dogs, ‘where do the chilly
winds don’t blow?’ remains an outstanding

question, halving answers to figure easily
into the ferment of a solution.

Arrows End

Seven years ago, seven years into the
dictatorship, what it is about the mouth?

Blushing mauve, brushing an apocryphal
sea’s pitch-green, and its odiferous yellows,

dust-layered, last night’s sweetened,
conscious greens of sleep,

Turgenev’s stoic first love on horseback,
flagging from the second burst

of summer’s clean heat,

her masterpiece painted over,
his workshop (a sandbox for reprobates),

rife with perpetual dilemmas, just within
a grand refuting of the elephantine,

romantic tradition, excising group-theory
of a partial a posteriori impression,

heeding toward that lean Christian,
deliverer of displays, retainer for

the West Side Soul;

enumerated blueprints of, maybe
wagered away, in a rushed throw

which never quite captured her sought-
after likeness.

Payphone

The disc of purple coloring our winter’s
rushed hours, Capital’s stalking light

turning shadow-bars across uniform
widow faces, like bracings about the tooth,

or in the jaw,

I half-studied my Hesiod listening to car
commercials on that talkful radio,

watching our children learn to act,

filming bright, new, select
caught outfits on bodies rounding up,

squared out, the open life of speech my
throat would not attempt,

or even take down, for a trying taste.