Monday, April 28, 2008

Poem Interlude


"Whatever it is, it avails not - distance avails not, and place avails not." Walt Whitman

The world is full of closed-off things
(bulldozers, broken walls, plywood and chain)
but only because the open is so persistent,
trees poking through the cracks, stars
ducking around the scaffolding, the soon-
to-be battened air free right now, cool now
as the ghosts of curtains pushed open by
tongues of air and toes of light. The buildings
haven't put on their skins yet, and the earth
here could be fields waiting to be planted,
for all we know. Lines are getting straighter
but only because asymmetry sprouts
like weeds, because rooms are like ships,
because streets are treacherous in their
exuberant patches (concrete, asphalt, cobbles
and bricks). Things are baking behind doors,
light is slipping like water through blinds,
and a space that will be closed off is open
now, we can look across the river awhile
longer. A heart within a heart within an eye:
the world is full of fear only because joy is
so persistent. Sometimes every living thing,
even here, takes off its clothes just to float.

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