Tuesday, July 29, 2008



I would read every page of the book in your hand if I could open it. The photograph captures the spine and the glut of the hardback’s gilding, a sliver of page as careful and modest as the point of your white throat. You sit rigidly while your mind composes a decades-long poem to God. Specks of changed metal descend on your bookish cell. You ask questions regarding salvation, but I have no answers and merely take notes: transcendent bibliophile, alchemical, oddly dressed.


If he could, this man would lecture me kindly on what I do not know and on what I know better than he. There is little that progress cannot teach us, he’d intone. Women are a certain thing, a certain way. His spectacles, small and wire, reveal my liberation, in which he partway believes.

What he does not see: the discoloration of his face framed with purple, then blue burst of chemical flower. His eyes untouched and shining from the center, beard trimmed but feral. The humanity in him stitched from something wild.

From his jacket an object emerges, a blankness or a book. It’s his auricle pulsing forth, the book he has written, the one that contains all the rules of his life and the love who was lost down river. She had never learned to swim, or swam too well.