bearing golden sawdust
of construction sites. Forgotten sense
of treachery midst saw & sills
yellow electric wires, live. At University
I would walk the weight of oranges, crates of oranges, walk the shape.
I would walk the prongs of anchors, bales of anchors, walk the shape.
In half-built constructions, I would sing songs for the weeping Lady.
Night would close-in, calling, softly.
My best friend had nearly died in an automobile accident.
Our friend John had been driving by the river, headlights switched off,
saying he could trace the curve in imagination. Memory
fails however. Memory fails, failed, the boy in the backseat was beheaded.
The girl holding his hands the weight of his hands
held in her memory a headless body for an instant
before her sense of self & other capsized.
I sang, in half-built homes, amidst tiers of white string knotted
& holding the myth of terraces together, sang for my friend.
She vanished into the dunes, the sculpted white dunes, later, knowing
a kind of God. Healing in that manner.
I sang, My Lady, Our Lady.
It would be some time before I too would hold the hand of the dead.
It would be some time before. Sawdust like cigar smoke in my lungs.
Gold reap of time. Gold reap of substance.
Let us know some wine.
The addict's knowledge of wine.
All the World is a Banquet (some poet once said)
or across the street
a transistor radio. Or is that voice, voices
converging on the nape of her neck
where the black cage shatters?
Cage of glass bones & cartilage.
We go for drives in the soft rain
like voices calling, softly. We stop
at fluorescant diners, she orders nothing,
her fingers curl in upon her palms
that she touches nothing....Yes.
I too have been thin enough
that people assumed I did not eat.
I ate. I ate voraciously.
I ate the rind of the voices rattling in my paper skull.
I ate the pulp of the ripe mangoes turning dark
in my palms. I ate what others thought
could not be devoured: shadows,
as the stone is lifted,
as the stone is lifted.
Even the skulls of demons
ground to white rice
were salt to fish & nuts.
All the world was a banquet
as my stomach growled,
chyme's acid, eating
its own lining, chyme's acid
eating its own disloyal & transporting
Tell the Prisoner
Tell the Prisoner
there is a key. He has locked his copy in a golden box.
What reasons are there to run toward the sea?
Earthquakes move us inward, or so I would think.
Toward the fresh water bodies. Toward the finger sized black flashlights
that write in the dark but never die.
There is a talk of a big storm. Some say it.
A storm out of a Stephen King novel. Winds, pounding the shore,
lighthouses dissolving beneath the snow. The search for light
begins, never ends. Light unlabeled. Light unbroken.
Love, Love. I checked the morning news. One inch of snow
in Saratoga. Blanket the horses. Blanket the doves.
Tell the Prisoner there is a key. He will feel manipulated
by the devils. He will feel only slight relief. He has more
reasons than ever to run toward that big paper balloon
called the sea. It eats his features. It yawns his face
into its suction cup & takes him back
to the village bicycles built for a thousand back to his cottage
inland where the lighthouse salts meat where the dirty white dog
named Salt walks around the circus poles pissing
gentle relief. Prison either makes you believe or pares
your belief from you. I have been there. It named me "who"
it tamed my cussing soul.
Carolyn Srygley-Moore is the author of four books of poetry, the most recent being Miracles of the Blog, published by Punk Hostage and available from Barnes & Noble online. She has been widely published internationally, including in pages of Estuary and Thus Spoke the Earth. Carolyn lives in Upstate New York with her husband, daughter, & rescue dogs.