This is the forest fire of my twenty-sixth year. Part smoke jumper,
I’ve set this narrative to burn down your front door. It burns blond with centerfolds,
—There, I’ve tried. That’s all I want to remember. Now I’m starting over:
The road overcast with feathers. Death only a Buick away. I brake
to see something naked through the ascetic’s light: a thumbnail
I can smell the dried mint over my mother’s bed. My childhood happens
The forks all wrong, the knives remaining. Someone dies. Or rather, no one dies
Let the cold be cold, and let it be quiet. Not even the wind to carry their cries.
And then a summer washing rented cars and reading only the endings of famous books.
of that City, the streets are subatomic colliders, Medusan waterways, statues sleeping.
and heirloom bone structure. I listen to save someone else, someone other.
By fall, the order of events no longer mattered. The maple leaves ransom their colors
K: my neologism, my netherworld nurse, all ether and eye shadow. She began
in a crowded room. We met at my aunt’s funeral, where the dead were inevitable
and lot more M. But it was her seizures, undressed in the exact violence
with an ashen vintage. I cindered every which way. At our wedding,
with envy, with luck. The wine was from Paris,
so easily divided. My childhood ended like this: Bloodroot, Trillium, Bull Thistle.
to show all the scenery, haunted and revisionist. I could tell you anything
This is the light,
I’m tired of meaning what I almost say. Sick of grief turning intelligible
Added breath. The assonance of a moan. Seventh degree burns.
Couldn’t it—for a moment—be the moon’s dress of embezzled light?
polishing the pavement, clouds suspended above like overcast hosannas.