I was born at the age of eight on the cut of no Christ,
gin and tonic met the equator of my hairless pines.
Under the geraniums of my Lugan piano, a cuddy
beneath bergs, I had the blank stare of a victim,
a relentless bicycle. I breathed in my next blind
father, upon a trapeze bar. I loved the daylight,
the veil of my grandmother's hat. My mother spoke
with larks coming from her mouth, she embroidered
buttons to my breast. On the first day, I asked the larks
to unbeak these buttons to show the nudes of the gallery
that I could collect the broken shells of rational hearts.
Then I created my tongue and braided my grave.
A poem is something that never is, but ought to be.
A poem is something that never has been, that never can be.
I constructed my development from my grandmother's
slips, the Russian tombs, and the retinal failures.
Speeding gold chessboards of sight: perhaps they
preferred disconnection so as not to see the disconnected;
perhaps when disengaged, the last sigh of vision delivers
untangled tropes. One should write in a language
that is not the mother tongue. If I didn't do something crazy
at least once a year I'd go crazy. I looked at my fists, angled
as accordions, a horse upon each girl, extracted from the stain
of sleep, the illusion of savagery. Where my tongue slipped
across my father's glass and burned me; where phone cords
and moons each end the summer, a blister of stone, I,
a soldier of children. All of my throats the planets, money wired
to each snowy renewal of skin, more skin, all the skin I could grow.
I drank the hunters, the waterfalls of bile, each hammer of my selves
a bitter astronomy. There is a secret to my vertigo, my only fish scales
in a sea of hankerchiefs. I was born at the age of eight on the cut
of no Christ, gin and tonic met the equator of my hairless pines.
True poems are fires; its conquests lit with shivers of pleasure or pain.