Thursday, August 27, 2009


I offer my perfection, severed and apart,
the swan’s glorious neck, white, silent.
Like feather laid on feather, I build
this place, temple to my own frail god.

No one comes or goes, yet how the halls
are filled with tails of sashes slipping
into doorways. I say silence, but listen.
There is a windchime’s bright refrain,

water over stone, the wind’s desire to cease.
Peonies sugar the air. The terrazzo hoards
the day’s heat. I preen and practice
before the fountain’s pool. I am a wing

splayed and honored, without purpose.
Even my beauty is incomplete. Here
I am, disjointed, dancing, a little hen
hanging chandeliers inside her coop.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Lantern Festival

Tonight the rare moon persists, calls echoes
from every nook. Winter has stripped
the lace from the pistachio, left it
black and keen against the cloudbank.
I have cared too much about the revolution

of barren planets, the climate of the sun,
the dream of water plumbed from stone.
By daybreak I expect a cure, a dose
of ice and sunlight. It is building

that calls me now. My desk bows
beneath the weight of strategies
and maps. I will swathe the windows
with crepe, ignore the bait of star
and branch. Even the snow will lose

its pretty riddles. My lips are lined
with ten-penny nails. I wait for morning,
for the moon to melt into the west,
a pale votive snuffed by my breath.