{ in memory of Franz Wright }

By what criteria may one identify
a worthy doctor? For that matter

How does one go about determining
the veracity of their child's school teacher?

Trick questions covered by 
insurance policies. Every institution 
holds its fair share of nuts squarely in place

From the warden's staff down to the student inmates
The trick is learning how to spell correctly
the trick to thinking, that is 

We may think of it as magic
where the letters of the words
in a literal sense conjure reality 

I think of it as writing 



of darkening black gathering intensity
as it forms the cloud polluting the eye
that scans over the horizon to see what
comes next seven blades of circumstance
arranged in a flowering scale dripping
diamond mercury drops in a stitchwork
buffeting a gale driven between gulfs
sparked in the albumen of outer space
while eight shadows stagger across this
permutation still taking place and all
nine entwined molecular chains separate
into three trinities combined while we
emerge from the tenth portal to find
one packed homestead open to infinity
dividing in twain to face each other
off in a battle of tempestuous love
giving birth to the third elemental
which time will double into six other
shades of blackened darkness gathering



Standing in the bathroom by a porcelain brink
looking crosswise in the mirror over the sink
noticing how far back this reflection goes
hardly anybody left worth a damn even knows
and the rest dropped off what's beginning to look
like a long time ago now and by that I mean already
marked in the pages of this printed out book.

So we bought an old house and entered the game
of war against the mouse of our division and name
buried in a long story that tore through our lives
to say the least at a minimal pace and it thrives
to this day without having to come out and state it
point blank the rift from smooth talking beast
to furry four-pawed friend continues without end
possessing each and every one of us who made it.

To trigger each other's passages as if we're one and all
encoded to be held in thrall swaying to the music
of the alternating staves getting edited genetically
along the superconductive way so that frenetically
everyone of us tailor made to react accordingly
until the long slow choral dance unwittingly reflects
an endless regression of our mirrored family tree.

The centipede walks and twists and talks to itself
and begins to understand this procession while it's
still unfolding off the shelf spitting and winking
to slice and cut like a barbed wire razor positively
humming with electromagnetic power cultivated
by a molecular chain still on the verge of balancing
itself out as we go on the whole wide world tested
in a panic before a mirror in self portrait arrested.



{ for Gregory Alden Davis }

We divide our aspect in a lot of ways
Some of them haven't even been thought up
by the population infesting the world today
but used to be common knowledge millennia ago
others are diffused through the ages by only a fraction
as the fewer among us here so very well know
our mechanical nature swung into action
by the well driven engines manufacturing snow
with all the seasons unwound in a blur behind us
fueled by the dying chorus of a thousand suns
what other reason could there be to explain
this manifestation's for us because we are the ones
who imagine we can see ourselves from afar with alien eyes
without realizing vision itself must set us apart from the rest
defining each other as cells from the host of the skies
shedding a spiral trajectory of sputtering stars
there's only one shadow a singular reflection and we're not it
we are all that's left over after the fuse has burnt out
the impressionist flare fading away into darkness
to bring a concussion of echoes that are no longer a dream
but realized here in the flesh now and for all eternity