One day a quirky
old building (dumbwaiters, gargoyles,
funhouse stairs) is brought down
with incisive verbs incanted
and precisely leveled charges
and up rises another.
To find the location where I’m speaking
drop your GPS in the forgetting hole
and navigate by the constellations.
To find that best moment of sleep
lie down in the pool and look up.
I’m dying to hear from you
to see your new shell.
Take a look in the mirror
of the choir dressing room
and find yourself attractive for the first time.
It’s the hair.
A little self-gazing is good at a certain age.
Take a look in the sacristy
where someone in costume
has been siphoning wine.
In my childhood church
they used a modest Malbec for communion
with pine and cat piss undertones.
In the drawers of candle snuffers
and offering envelopes you’ll also find
a songbook and a libretto
with too many authors
that says someone must do something
about all the suffering, and, if only the right combination
of tools could be found
and says elsewhere, everyone must not.
That’s the way of a flat world. Now, no one
is on his way to help.
After big wars come big words
and then a promise and another
until, as winter dons its rosy duds, the calf
finds its legs and its way in the herd
quickly or else.
That too is the world – libraries
burned or worse, neglected;
doggerel dressed as verse
while the little man pumps his little fists
for the cameras and the maddened crowd.