On a winding road some miles west of Austin
A silhouette repairs the incline.
Steep and dry the oak trees bend towards
Grassless patches of sun.
The man who built this land leans
Like a whitewood frame - his pale corners
Both a church and dancehall. He’s a jailbreak
With a hall of praise.
A decade earlier he dreamed that Luck
Would bury this town. Now the bank peels
From its wall and the post office cautions
A long time to the left.
Surroundings fall without senses
Into an open lock of non-touring days.
Sometimes it feels like a playground,
Or a burnout joint in a cupholder.
Posterity will be kindest
To the lifetimes divided by degree,
Not interest. In the final decades
Commentary will swell into a kind of excellence,
Artless for its intellectual impulse.
Neither knowledge nor tone
Can exile the punitive damage
Established by instruction.
Years of companionship will stifle
Under the heavy sedation of fractured affection.
Not even brute imagination
Can seize fault that isn’t there.
What matters favors no act.
Still, influence prowls like an evangelical desert.
Restless and dry it searches
For prey more than prayer.
Only by acknowledging our nature, embalmed by amber sap, can we avoid solipsism. Breathing won’t dispel monotony. To be precise, it is my insertion into your experience that opens the body. Without it, words would be impossible.
Underneath the atom, before learning, was a lesson poised and it suffered of passion. The depths made it indistinguishable. It made it heavy, with limbs, thick and embarrassing. Eyes too are inconvenient. We must acknowledge this.
Why is knowing not inseparable from the ever-widening arc of who we are and are becoming? Each step marks openness, indeterminate yet too difficult to shift thinking one century to the left.
Do you understand? To be sure you must demolish hope and compile a philosophy outside of your senses. Invent powers and throw them to wonder, a fathomless pit of disbelief. Then watch intelligence simmer and walk away like steam.
Long candles bend on the altar.
Their yellow throats sigh
and make the church swell blue.
Children never smile at the
Masquerading women. Their
Silence is a strong cologne.
Does anyone here know
What it means to grieve?
The inside is painted with you,
And there is a cloud that surrounds
The only hand that held us close
When the other shook
Beneath the book.
On a moon coloured lawn bound by false security
Heron laments, as I wait: cold and barefooted
till time loses measure and shadows earn names.
Starved of oxygen a street light whimpers and
drowns, adding gravity to my thoughts
The life world organic is an enigmatic fool
Open-ended by conceit and caught in static space.
The “facts” are representations invented in some vain attempt
To explain life. Inevitably, genius is eclipsed
By the living dimension of the sun.
Surely, the endemic will outlast cultural acquisition
Because it overlooks space as a mathematically infinite void.
Our convictions traverse disjunction, but still we say,
“the sun rises and sets.” Earth, does not move.
In this way history is primitive.
The most unfathomable enigma is not infinity, but language’s structures.
It makes no sense to the common world, yet remains a guide
Supporting forgotten ground that is first felt, then undervalued.
Although not far by being old he lived too far away
In a time I could not grasp nor enter. The walls stood pale and
Solid, sleeping with faded pictures that had long lost their meaning
And so robbed the sitter of a wonderful splendor –
Of immorality’s enduring fame. Even art aged here.
His smile rested under the shadow of a heavy frown, and I
Wondered whether it hurt to smile under all those wrinkles
That weighed down a face reminiscent of a handsome past.
How often I had walked these halls bound by an inescapable and
Unsettling presence. With all or no amount of effort
My attempt at revival had rendered his world abstruse, and I felt cheated
By time knowing I would never know him as I wanted.
Life was no grand fresco. It was in these quiet moments folded into the sleeve & shadow of time, concealed but not hidden beneath its own beauty, that with patience revealed something far more vital, something far more essential.