Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The Diaphanous Library / new poems 2011

Her There, Not There (for Erich Nagl)

in the negligible time
it took to turn the page
of a fiction, not a hoodoo
in my hands, an ocean away,
between mountains, there amidst
grape vines and ancient castle ruins -

the death of your mother, who had waited for it,
african grey from the cancer, breath laboring
in the shallows of fluid from pneumonia,
just as she had waited for you to leave
the hospital room for one last time
before slipping away herself,
a million starry miles now
mocking the proximity
of just minutes ago
and leaving you to know
yourself too well, now alone
and not really knowing after all
where to turn, never really having known,
not just in this moment of pure abandonment,
but in the sheer vacuum of a life utterly determined
to swallow everything you have known, including
what was left of her always reassuring voice,
all sound whisked away instantly
with the closing of a door
with her there, not there
behind, beyond it

- save for the sound of these pages
turning in my hands, just before
the ringing of a phone,
the call coming in
to let me know
she was gone

No comments: