Lynn Strongin

Needle-children, keep shooting up clean           I leave the mimeo-

Graphed pages on the table.
Dog paws of wind lift them
Boxy terrier-head of wind                            the color of desperation                               vertebrae broken: Flatbed, quartered
The veteran of traveling looking out the window
Leaving the mimeod pages of paper
All the helpers I have had thru the years
Ghost & raven
Rooster on top of hill rowing
Black fire from his red throat
There is an inevitability of bombs.
Commandments to follow in this lifetime:
Never phone your mother first thing in morning.
Let the mimeo sheets be scattered by wind.
L Principia Mathematic
Nothing is quantifiable but numbers by logic.
After school, read on the top step of the stoop or work in the shop
Book on lap
Knees locked tight beneath wooden desk
Pushing pencil point into the lines of paper when others are roughhousing.
There is nothing rough housing about writing
Cries are icy:
Out of them I make rings
I twirl around my little finger
A hoop
Round & a round
Getting thinner
As the road of life threads out describing at last a unicorn in winter’s first blessing wind.

On a momentous day

A flight across the Channel
The glory of St John the Divine
The apex of stone vault where every candelabrum was lit, burning
Pray for all of them swallowing us whole the sheer height.
Don’t point the finger at me, Mr Pain.
How did we ever get here?
Mimeographed pages strewn around
Braids done up neatly as a coffin.

Needle Children

Past needle-mothers make their way: eyes Pilgrim brown, Quer-gray:
 They take sitches for an unearthly tapestry:
Dive the needle thru potato sacking, maize-gay.
Do not harm thyself, child: Maxi & Midnight do not want to sepend ay
More midnights in chatrooms for self-disharmony.
Needle children, pale as blue egrets, lost herons look silk threads thru mortality’s fabric
Ribbons dotted with blood, cold as Labrador.
Art can be suicidal.
Patch dolls. Girl-translator do not tarnish brightest silver. Paul Revere was a silversmith of the highest order.
Child approaching children in the mirror, be fore warned:
The darkest descendant of your fore-fathers was fine as a feather for flying. Temple shades. A churched psalm,
A deep down desire for satin, for stone. Needle-wounders, leave yourselves alone.
There is a door thru which greif can exit without turning back in to dig the heel in.
There is a time:
Where days do not matter                          nor years nor clocks even.
Neither smiles                   nor tears ,the months have done. Muteness is its own song.
I have done up the mimeographs a great wind has blown them
If desire has a hole it is for honey.
Smash no doll’s skull:
enrolled                               in Eternity’s school, foreverness has its own smile and guise.
We will sing the loved wife’s ode. There will be no dress code.

Snowgeese fly overhead,

I have been warned that children think such rebellions as running thru the streets of a midnight town
With a dead chicken “shocking.”
The cosmic yawn.
Will you mention the words, “Love you, pal,”
 as you go down into darkness, descend
Crying to be loved, pretending to be your brother you phone, ‘Hugh hung himself.”
My beloved fox.
As for my old love, kind & strong with bright eyes:
your face flashflooded with grief when I showed you the photograph of ward children: “That was my childhood.”
We had our time alone, your wrote,
 “I sensed (hopefully correctly) that the amount of strength you have for communication with others is limited and i hoped I was sensitive to that. If you wanted time alone with me, all you had to do was SAY IT.”

Snowgeese fly overhead.
Needle children thread the hoop
If there is blood on the other side
For sake of beauty, rest, blessedness: leave mayhem alone
Color it
Kiss & hug it goodbye:
Forever bed it.

I take what is a derivative of poppy

burgundy. Morphine.
Forget about the being in love. We do.
Not strong enough today to quell the pain is even it, if I took razor to my flesh it would be on purdpose, hurt less.
                I put two ancient photographs of my passionate love thru laundry
Mistakenly: they come up lucid, thirty years ago to the day.
Maybe we navigate eternity?
Who is in the boat next to me, brethren, sisters
Braids the color of old whiskey:
Who is beside us              bobbing as high?
Hardly. But at times, nearly.
Needle children, row on calmly, shoot up clean

At first manufacted by Merck a small drug company
Perishables. I take risks. Reap rewards.
Now the opiate, in the arms of Morpheus I rode with you forty
Years ago in the last century.
Niece, children, derive yourselves from all solid as good wood:
Now removed purple shoes, Puritan brown, laced with Quaker grey
I give what pours forth as ecstasy
Color of good blood
Derivative of poppy.

Gone Are Certain Antique Things

(Susan Bright)

Wind, a dry December wind, flicked a cottonwood leaf outside her room in Austin
Then all coffers were empty
Of funds to save the polar bears, give them space to splash.
                        A world turn round
Like a globe within  a tomb. The cold could put a bullet right thru the skull, this boredom.
We had copperplate cursive correspondence: stash of letters tied by brown ribbon
To turn parchment in a back Tennessee sunroom. Strings tying slender bodies, bone-toned, embalmed, calmed.
                        After all the clamor of life, Witness a writer’s tomb, bird cage of wood
Salted with dark tears, swinging.
She was one prone to enjoying things:            large, the save the polar Foundation, and small tatty ball of string for knitting a boy’s stocking at the heel.
Pies baked in a storm of energy, while proofing a novel & bathing a son or later on batting on both ears to get to cleaning out that damned garage.
She never kept a Blitz journal
She raised funds for polar bears: she herself splashed like a polar bear down South there.
She knew geography was carved into the skull bones, shin & sternum:
She spoke or writing “fracturing place in the way the cubists fracture shape:
The soul remakes itself as composite.:
This morning I hear
Small hammers breaking up sod: Gone to God.
            Heart-hardness letters from Edwina Outwater. One more note to tie a bow on he pile. (Lo, rock quarries of small colorful stones, smile.)
Armoring grayling like mica sheathes:
Lila pitchers hold silver dollars still from last autumn
Their beauty-outpolling season, splashing sun on winter’s sill
Death is done, the real deal. “Will it be an open casket” asked the florist in the shrill voice of a mating strutter-bird. Down town strutter. There was no word I could utter.
While she tariffed up my grief, Ii imagined Flannery O’Connor & Eudora Welty’s South: Love was the stopped mouth.
Anunciatory as boys blowing bugles
Winter peacocks in moulting tatters would drab the eye until
Sheer silhouette                        winter calligraphy swims up like goldfish frozen at bay
Outlined upon the Texas winter hill: winter peacocks in their lilacs, violets, pewter kill-
Ing take he sky:
            What could be bleaker, more still? More revelatory to the eye?