Thursday, September 29, 2011


geese flap overhead. in a v? no, one side's too short making it more
a check mark. geese are smart, their timing's just right. they know when to move
to lower latitudes. the days and nights cold, the light hours abbreviated,
come december this is nowhere to be. geese honk a hundred words a day
their own sonorous back and forth. i can't be sure what it's about
the meaning in the exchange is unclear.

geese cruise along northern air currents from greenland and montreal and old town
toward mexico or other points south for the winter—the old man would like
to leave tomorrow or even sooner. pack your bags. the check mark
disintegrates into a horizontal line and geese fly leaderless, the side by side
winging of entire families. geese have this attitude—partners stay together for life—
and their goslings have been talking to them since they were inside eggs.

the afternoon disappears into dark strips of chilly air. i put away my rake, my shovel.
cold hands. i pull on my fleece, head inside, brew tea, turn on tv 2011—
the whole year spent in the creep toward november and on the airwaves talk is steeped
brown and rancid up and down this melting pot. bah! turn on thelonious monk
instead. a little evening jazz. epistrophy.
paris, 1966.

tides ebb and tides flow no matter what happens
birds fly and fish swim no matter what happens
galaxies die and galaxies are born no matter what happens
bees make honey and people make love no matter what happens
earth spins into day and earth spins into night no matter what happens
life remains scrutable and life remains inscrutable no matter what happens.

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