This muteness

This muteness

that lipreads you
on the dumb cuneiform
of memory
That invisible jet
somewhere
passing
at the speed of sound,
its past tense
gone
before
its gone again.
I wish there were
a saviour
to forsake me
for this feeble
prayer.
But even God
is known for
his love
of words
that must not
be said.
I wish I were deaf.
Not hear the silence
that says,
Paul, forget me.
And
I
wish
I
could forget
my name,
who
I was.

The Birds that Summer

And the muscles of wind
loosening everything,
though I knew you when the sun stuck
to all of it,
and light, having traveled 96 million miles,
brought your face close. Still,
you shivered at night.
You were so thin then.
I feel the sunlight here and there today; I hold on
to what is leaving.
I try to forget how things change.
I try to remember the birds that summer
that somehow to make it it back.

Heralding

Wild birds, this morning,
the shapes of fists
on the steering wheel, steal up
from the Nith
and crisscross closely
my speeding car.
It seems the heart must
bear the winter,
then drift up from a river
before the wild bird
will take to the wind.

Little Clouds on the Ocean

You’re in the bathroom emptying my semen
from your body. On the bed, I lay stripped,
my cock, wormed in light, burrowing
into the tangle of other fractures, the veins that orbit back
into darkness.
I stare up into the ceiling; below,
it imitates a fish, pulsing to breathe an air it cannot breathe.
It cowers between my legs; blood exiles
to the brain, as if blood is the ejaculate
of this second, outer heart. All my life,
I have been giving birth to this animal between my life,
but the world is only deep
and immense for a time; your legs around me,
like quotes, fit only briefly,
exclaiming upwards: we are falling,
sinking into the shallowness of the night air,
and into the sheets of our separate dreams,
fading, cum stuck to our flesh, like weak glue,
like the reflections of little clouds on the ocean.

(Rewrite)

Cum

You’re in the bathroom emptying my semen
from your body. On the bed, I lay stripped,
my cock, wormed in light, burrowing
into the other fractures of mine.
I stare up into the ceiling; below,
it imitates a fish, pulsing to breathe an air it cannot breathe.
It cowers between my legs; blood exiles
to the brain, as if blood is the cum pumped
from the other heart. All my life,
I have been giving birth to this animal between my life,
but the world is only deep
and immense for a time; your legs around me,
like quotes, fit only briefly,
exclaiming upwards: we are falling,
sinking into the shallowness of the night air,
and into the sheets of our separate dreams,
fading, but glued to our flesh,
like the reflections of little clouds on the ocean.

Come Back to Me

Metaphor is shadow.
Near me, it keeps its distance.
It lays down beside me, too,
as if I am a sundial
confessing a different time.
I struggle to grasp it,
grant it touch before it trails off.
I am wrestling for a universe against all the worlds
that don’t exist,
but sometimes, I think, they do
as they pass through, the numinous, the love
or the spoor of memory
that sees the hunter backtracking
through the accents of the river,
who has it recall
that he might have been the river.
I want to tell you the thing I want
to hear myself say.
I will make you to be this letter
and each line will be a line
that you cross over, and failing,
you will fall, and you will fall,
into this envelope.
It will be sealed, and for a minute,
it will be sent away,
until I taste the glue again.

Despair

Despair

“A creek is more powerful than despair.”
— Jim Harrison

Do you remember the moment before I knew you,
when neither of us existed in the manner in which
a creek does not exist before rain?
I’ve been dreaming the last few nights that I found you,
an eddy that would not,
as it wound up, receive me. You were a star
with ancient arrowheads of trout,
and I felt the pain of breathing then.
Remember the moment you no longer understood
how the rocks could swim like seals,
or how oceans are small compared to the creeks
running through the centre of our lives?
I wonder,is there a fifth season, wandering,
a twisted creek that, with its long fingers,
no longer feels for a Spring?

The Manner in which it Does

What I would like to forget is the snow
The way it does.
The manner in which it hesitates
On the black earth like backs of fish
chumming in shallow haze
Trampling over frozen words.
The young deer making it across the car
Scouring the brain’s slippery scrawl.
The coming of Summer, the light
Loose in the fields for the love of other things
Which still sing to me from
Shadows smouldering behind trees.

Engulfing

And I see the river through the window,
as if the window were the river.
“Your metaphor,” you remark, “confuses me.”
It does not confuse you.
You know, inside the window,
instinct stirs, reeling, changing
course, giving back itself.
Engulfing it, you
confuse the river.