pay me for this time

Pleasure is productive; it produces itself. —Arielle Zibrak

Clouds stretch fluff
over million-dollar hills.
That clock stopped years ago.
The plants grow taller.
Evacuations have started,
master prompts. This land of fault lines
under a sky so blue, suspended in hope.
Responsive is the desire, a memory.

relent

SFO to PDX, March 2012

#HolySpirit trends
as the jet stream moves
torrid seasons west to east.
The Arctic Circle holds tropical.
We start to make summer plans—
then actually book them.
“Space to breathe” or “create
new memories” congregate
fragmented within threaded comments
like when Roland Barthes says
in A Lover’s Discourse,
“this is the paradisiac realm
of subtle and clandestine signs:
a kind of festival not of senses
but of meaning”. Maybe this summer
will feel more like a communion—
public intimacy sanctioned.

click, if you must

unrequited OKCupid inquiry (May 2015)

Stay longer in me, take roots. — Vera Pavlova, “If There Is Something To Desire”

In this kingdom, we intend to be recognized
as permanent guests and move around like trees.
Semblance is our currency. We become fixed
points on a map, a place arranged
by analogous topography and revelatory grief.

In this kingdom, endlessly contextually forsaken,
such transfigurations build our shelters
and show up in our mentions. We augment trust
by automating our needs to the indentured bidder.
Occasionally, we find survival inside failures.

In this kingdom, probable threat is enough to act.
Near future, present pasts, all of it exchanged
under systems of calculated instinct. We whisper
feelings and their cousins opinion and belief
as our syntax preserves its subversive hiss.

a stranger’s response

Wincenty Dunikowski-Duniko, Breath, 1976

I regret to inform you the rich have begun
harvesting Mars’ oxygen;
inter is in the written news again.
They claim no correlation nor ask for forgiveness.

I am worried you aren’t worried.
You might not be paying attention? Public
policy is stillborn. Impulse
thoughts and prayers are batched releases.

You might want to relax. Find a way
to watch the Milky Way spin its slack spiral.
This slow death of heat and tempers rising
is not holding its sweet promise of sublimation.

What I need is rapture, not the heavy-breath
version on repetitive pulpits whose mouths whip
up contagious affect. I want the rapture felt,
the immediate pause left behind after release.

Now shared, this is no longer be mine nor exclusive.
Simply, and completely, evaporating like the breath of a stranger.

condolences

Having the equilibrium of a poet, I kept falling in love. — Frank Stanford,
“With the Approach of the Oak the Axeman Quakes”

Felicia Simion, Self Portrait, 1999

And everyone’s competing
For a love they won’t receive
‘Cause what this palace needs is release
— Lorde, “Team

The neighbor’s laundry hung drying in the wind generated from our conversations below. It listened like well-placed ears as your observations unraveled my patterns: cold penetrates while the sun strokes. You said in order for this to work, we must agree to be happy but your gaze was hard, questionable. My tone grew suspicious. Wandering fragmented and feral as virtual imagination, I drifted. Our poetics of pleasure and devotion now kindred mysteries. Illusions of prophesy, or was it property, told us we could own each other with infinite monthly payments—no money down—an absolute steal! A flashing sign said Don’t Eat, Touch Only. Absorption may reduce your wing span and there’s not an airport within hundreds of miles from here. Yes, of course this is a competition and you’ve been eliminated before knowing all the rules. Love, now a cathedral built from simulation, was defined for us. The laundry, dried hard as bones, was pulled back inside.