Pull the blue coat
around you (Night) - I have swallowed this
Word & Broke
my tongue upon the Shore
he slept fitful his
breathing ticked uneven. she put
her finger on something it was his wrist. or was it.
there was a train in his sleep he jumped
she woke he did not but spoke:
Have you ever
kissed a stone.
no she answered he continued.
I kissed a bookshelf once
but the whole thing fell apart,
the whole thing broke.
Thus went their
conversations in the evening
one awake the other dreaming.
he was very large with hands that covered everything.
she knew him just a little. she might have known
by his hands, light
particles scattering across a full
blown torso. Light, we are characterized
by it- Light- which is not a sum.
elios , sun
i have begun
to unwind myself into the light punctuation
of his wrist . in this:
the right light dilution
I shall exchange
this wound (for the Sun)
we die together from loving each other
X's voice was
[there is enough
room for us inside this
bed laid out inside these
dead she said]
We shall exchange a
single heavy Sun
when the Sun-Man comes.
dilute myself (Sun) I am
nowhere gathered together
here- Swoon without
killing myself (Sun). (hypnosis).
As a wound, love comes.
Diane Di Prima
I'll probably die
here (northern California)
either in rain or drought
never have that
place in Santa Fe
than these green winters:
poppies and flowering plums
the cold & foggy summer
& sliver of
golden autumn we sing praise to
in these raw sandy hills
brash trees &
an occasional fox
instead of the lapful of opals I'd planned on
light off the yucca, pampas grass the music
drums from a
Buddhist temple in a cabin
on what was once a
just down the road from garlic
& artichoke farms
NEW MEXICO CUT-UP
I am as large as
the space between the houses
A burning river, standing there in the doorway
Not interested in any religious group.
The plane dropped a ladder onto
a big old
teetering in a field of dried plants.
Ruth & Jerry dug up big blue beads
by the side of a log cabin.
He saw that I was in desperate need
of those little
things we define ourselves with.
As she touched them, in Amazonia
a yellow and black bird climbed
onto my heart.
Drums were beating
in the villas
of the super rich
down out of the mountains
and making excuses for her.
We're here to get
you out of this
You'd better get
dressed really fast.
Three women were building a medicine wheel
around Colombian guerrillas
in the curvy
I moved fearlessly.
Shame hung back
On the acacia trees
In the rain.
A muezzin was calling
We spread a picnic
On the bed.
That's how everything happened first.
Loving was such a panacea, a blood
That when it was raining on the Galata Bridge
The sky broke itself into two
Where your face ended and your body
That's to say your neck,
Was an erogenous, neutral zone,
The slippery cliff of passion.
My black mulberry, my forked darky, my
My grain of pomegranate, my grain of light, my only one;
I am a tree, my limbs, a porch hanging with grapes,
I am a hive, you are my honey, my bitter honey,
My sin, my ague.
Tongue of coral, teeth of coral, thighs
I gave you a life, my wife,
My black mulberry, my forked darky, my Gypsy,
What more will you be to me, my odd one, queer one,
My smiling quince, my weeping pomegranate,
My baby, my stallion, my wife.
When quinces become
You become mine,
When above our troubled heads
The world is translucent.
equipped with blade
& bone ; & laughter
to cut one's throat on
(blue wash over palimpsest)
over rock, over wire
"we're down to the wire"...
but "Sing in me, Muse, and
through me tell the story..."
the grey-eyed poet,
eyed me, laughing
She must not tear
When the grey-eyed
Athena lit up the
Goddess she is, or lady
the "subtle witch"
her long hall
Am I a boy,
you should make me soft &
he entered the
his heart crashing
Vaulted (but gods
do this, &
everything with ease)
....he ended it
I am worn in love
Has he made me a half-wit?
What am I cacling for?
I've been cut clean,
but hear me further-
.....He ended it!
And here I am now,
myself to this strange island
(a shaky bag of tricks!
a bottomless deceit!
a raging mind-)
His cool & nimble tongue desired
"bear reports to the wide world" she said,
a tiny owl nesting
purring in her hand
but I am full, & have not
tempered my hunger
"bear reports to the wide world"
but Everything sticks to me!
"Bear reports to
the wide world" she
cast a grey eye
; sprightly, my poet-lady
armed W/ every consort
(the bickering, O!..)
the little owl keeping his animal
watch at the
in shoaled coral,
the sea, the thread,
the hot song
WE'RE THE POETS
SUCKLING WILD GOATS!
travel away, and
came to a station
choked into disuse like the train
by the assault of trees. And if we looked
to find a directional clue,
it was perhaps in the white rocking chair
positioned beneath an old map
on which red asterisks were starred above
prospective gold mines. Gold in the river,
gold in the hills. A film star's mansion burnt
for being on a site.
We found the
stationmaster stood upright
in a tank of honey, his flesh preserved,
and later on the lake. The bears were there,
prophetic, still, so gold it seemed the dark
was light around their forms- and fish jumping
were liquid elocution in the night.
glamorised. I used to read
John Ashbery on the underground, get high
on weird and quirky lateral metaphor,
surface in a distracted state.
I like those big impossible mauve dreams
in which something happens with no more sound
than a tennis ball falling out the air
into high grasses. Later on that spot
has sprung a statue, nose and eyes
inquisitively peering through mobbed blades.
There's got to be a high point. Thrown up arms,
coming out the crowd
a sequinned jacket, just like poetry
surprises by image. She used to work
in drag by night, somebody else by day
and keep the link by send up. It's too bad
for men to keep one gender. In the stars
configurations are mineral tonight,
dazzled clusters like DNA blueprints.
I mostly like to
imagine their roar
the huge fire energies that have them spin.
Later the club. A torch song cabaret,
I need to feel the
hurt get broken down
in a smoky ballad, and sense that pain
burn with indictments from a jealous heart
left on the blueside downside dark of town.
Time of Hunting
(You! and tea time)
bringing the house to life. Halayik is pouring the tea. Lumps
sugar, lumps and lumps. Bedevi rewinds the clock. The Bey's slender penis slightly
trembles. The castle gate squeaks. And a girl called Rage wakes up a girl, called Flower.
...and the Bey comes
downstairs and kisses you. The house trembles slightly.
The child lets go of
his paper ship in the pool. Returns and waits for tea.
Your face sails
Men who went hunting
are returning. They hold birds on their hands. Quietly the
waited for the men. Men return with flowers In their hands. Swans look at the men
returning from hunting. The hearths crackle. The women sit down and are read to from
a book. Birds and flowers join. A peacock stands up as in a painting. A casement
window opens from inside, closes from inside. And the Sultan's bootmaker fetches the
Sultan's boots at last. Then they go hunting again. A man comes and teaches the women
calculus (women knew mathematics then). A dog watches them and leaves. Then the
cavalry soldiers come. Nobody thinks of the battle. There is only loneliness in battle.
It can not enter any house. A Jew sits backwards at a student's desk and fucks.
A girl looks at other girls. The man holds the woman's hands. The faces of the women were
There were no
Americans then. Women wore underwear (Terry Moore visited Istanbul
Mr. Hilton's companion when the Hilton Hotel was opened and a newspaper photographer
took her picture her knees up in bed with no underwear under her skirt. Oh, the scandal!).
I began a moronic dirty tasteless poem, but couldn't finish it Women were then in decorous
paintings. Nobody went into houses. Nobody went hunting in the houses. But soldiers did
return from hunting. But a book of tales always stood open. A window leaned against the sky,
(at which we used to look.)
First women met him.
First a woman firmed up her breasts. Then all the
The male fighters used to fall asleep.
I used to play. I ran my hand along the shores of his mouth.
Two row boats were shoved into the water. Then we used to sit and wait for him.
A woman is washing
herself next to us, watching her wash herself. I took her
and went away. The woman holds your hips. She knocks against the door. Slender.
A horse is ridden
is let go.
loneliness. Castle walls on castle walls. Castle walls on sheep, silk,
red. Tecimen drops his bolt of silk and leaves. Embroidery frames are straitened. The
maids' slender faces become clear. A liveried boy holds the gate of the castle. Musicians
arrive. They twirl their moustaches before the Sultan.
The island remains far away. A bolt of silk falls into the water. Three Beys laugh.
It reaches us.
Something else descends
The women were left
downstairs. Very much downstairs.
Vineyards went to seed. A child put
(The trees cross
water, the water. The black servant fetches the mirror, the
needles. The sheep's fleece is sheared and combed. A woman makes love to a balcony.
Galleons, the phaeton with two horses and the streetcar enter.) Clang.
She opens a book and
reads. A black servant passes by with a painting. A sleep
against a balcony.
The child took always
the side of the canal.
...and men looted
those places and joined the fleet.
Then the Sultan comes in. (I am looking, suddenly your hands are different.) The Sultan
crosses his legs & Sits down. Your feet disappear. They leave into the night Then that
he takes you. You...
The Sultan keeps sitting. Stares at Ahmet III.
That man doesn't let
you go. That man laughs. Winking caresses the rope. The feet
you possess (these feet never came to me) - these feet - lean against my sky.
The Sultan stands up. The fleet stops. Maybe the Sultan never stands up. Too weak.
Rope climbers never climb up. High wire walkers, tents and bridges, the acrobats who
roll trays in the air never come up. So that the Sultan amuse himself. I, where can I take
you? Where is where?
A fragment of an arm is out of the phaeton. Maybe they are burning the fleet and
we are of of here.
And the Sultan stands up. (The buses stop.)
A woman takes a woman's mouth in her mouth. Upstairs.
The baby boy lies
prone. As if born this morning he lies prone. Some water seeps
first. Potent, slippery. Sneaks towards the other water. Then like a moray spreads
and embraces the other water. The other water becomes wavy. It keeps staying wavy.
Then as if washed with soap it alters.
Flat, it falls flat.
The girls pass by.
The men avert their eyes. Pressing on the gas they pass by.
yellow stuck on those oak floors and didn't come off.
I pick one of the
boys and leave.
They are carrying a
white cross downstairs. The child Mohammad is laughing out of
walls. Chora on her beautiful camel is feeding the birds. Three four storey houses.
Arched, tiny, windowless.
With yellow walls and floors. And their beds are white (beds are white in every
epoch, they are white in our epoch too). There was a lot of crying. Then the winter
sweets come out, rose waters are sprayed. And donkeys, camels are pretty. A black servant
gathers the girls together & strips them. The maidens cover their vulva. In a painting
Zeus kidnaps Europa and rapes her. How beautifully the man held the book of stories.
Angels come, but don't come down.
And in cavernous
rooms they make love. Women took no one with them & made
Grown a bit big they come downstairs, attracted by our white sides. Maybe they love your
hands. I was weak, couldn't stand up. Looked. I looked & I was weak. Wore a new
crescent shirt. The horse as always waited at the gate.
grown big you came downstairs
grown big by my looking
One night the hunting
ends. Sefine comes out. The galleons stop. The three Beys get
their horses. Partridges, falcons, mountebanks, the fleet get off. A man makes the corpse
laugh. The Queen takes a pheasant and leaves. The men unbag the slain animals and
distribute them. Boys light up the hearths. And women leave traces of paper light wind
behind their flounces. The frigate stops. Copper trays of halva come in. The slain animals
reek. The ember dims. Suddenly the house is full. The house recedes. The tents come
down. A man burns the slain animals to cinder. What a beautiful child is the hunted
animals, with naked feet...
And I set the
galleons to fire. I stand against the live smell of the flesh. The
recoils and waits. Copper trays infested with rice stand still. The girls walk to the
pigeons. The girls cross the canal, walk to the pigeons. They hold their hands to the fire
and don't withdraw them.
You kept climbing up a ladder kept climbing down.
The slain stand
(Oh, you!... and) The
dead comes in the evening, ember. We look. The black
lights the candle. The girls come out. The horse doesn't stir. Suspires on the dead.
The sky comes in. Rolls up the carpets. Calls up the girls. The hand snatches the story
page. The sounds come downstairs. Wander around the house. They come and steal a pitcher.
It, it stays yellow. The nail cuter walks in and cuts the hand nails, toe nails, already
dead, of the Sultan.
The corpse is bored. Kicks back the carnation.
If I Wasn't a
Girl, I Would Have Been a Fish
And We Would Have Met In a Stream
Slithering through the tagged purl, she
can barely be seen
as he catches a million images of himself reflected on her
skin-tight silver leaf scales.
Her muscles pulse with the stream. The bright sun-feathered
hook and lure, cast into the depths kaleidoscopically, dangle
before her lonesome eyes. Although she sees her fate (it's
the too polished bait that warns the catch away), she
impulsively swallows the shiny hook into her moist mouth.
Right on cue, he pulls back, lodging the metal deeper into her
gums, adeptly yanking her out of the water and reeling her in.
He is fast. She convulses with seizures as if orgasming, all the
while refracting light off her shimmering scales into her glinting
eyes. He pauses, momentarily turning back into a boy, remembering
his father and a 10 lb. salmon they'd caught, and grabs her pale
throat. Her eyes soften, bulge, and glaze. He rips the golden
hook out of her swollen lip as if in violent kiss, tearing the pink
flesh. A piercing heat rides through her mouth like a new
language ; but this is of little concern to her, because she is with
him now. With a quick stroke of the lip of his knife, he strips her
sleek body naked, then rips the oily scales into scars, exposing
her open, wet, prime, and cardinal red. He runs the blade down
her glistening back and, skilfully removing her delicate spine,
he fills his palms with her helpless flesh. He gives it a hearty
slap. Her heart, still beating, feels apologetic for the crudity of
Under his breath, dry tongued, he mumbles about a beauty that
can't be reproduced, "like a phoney cunt.,, As he turns her meat
over, her shredded lips tremble, anticipating a princely transforming kiss.
She confesses: "I love you because you see me as pure meat;
not even U.S.D.A." He lifts his knife with a jerk can't he see her?
Can he resist her expectant gaping lips?- and plunges the bloody blade
into her throat, splits her down to the heaving belly, until her gleaming
spleen, liver, gills and heart drop on to his bile-washed boots. Her last
thought as he chops off her head and tail and drops her filleted fish into
his hot-rod iron frying pan, is that he reminds her of Faulkner.
She tries to recall his Nobel speech: It is easy enough to say that
man is immortal simply because he will endure: that when the last
ding-dong of doom has clanged and faded... She simmers until she
stops her inexplicable squirming. Now he says, "perfect."
Knife beaming in slippery hand, he looks at her... from the last
worthless rock hanging tideless in the last red and dying evening... She
looks delicious. Without removing her from the sizzling pan, inhaling
her roasting salty aroma with well-earned pride, he begins to bite into
her scalding flesh, impatiently trying to fit the whole of her into his
puny inexhaustible mouth.
Only Then, Tasting the Pungent Textures of My Body,
Would You Realize I Wasn't a Fish But a Girl
who Could Not Swim and Had Grabbed Onto Your Lure
to Keep From Drowning
DEATH OF A LADY (a moral fable)
At precisely 12 noon on the last Tuesday
of the year, Eu knew the
instant she woke up that she was dead, because her outer body
lay rigid with a dense chill only known in myth, her pores had been
rimmed with firm yolky mucus and clotted blood, her dried and
swollen tongue cleaved to her petrified palate and she couldn't
even lift her blue fingers, and at that instant she began to
understand that we are taught the reverse of everything we
need to know, and she finally and for the first time felt fully
dispossessed of herself, caught dead as she was in her any-old-day
underwear, for, having gone to sleep the night before in menstrual
stained frayed sheer off-white Victoria's Secret panties, partly
because she had been too tired to slip them off, but mainly because
she enjoyed wearing in heathenish secret unladylike and abused
undergarments which made her feel terrifyingly intimate with herself,
and now, being dead, she was unable to make tea and brush her teeth
and change into the proper deathwear with which to welcome God, who
she knew would come any minute to take her to the Unspeakable
Beyond, so, as she heard Him knock and then, as she expected, saw
Him walk through the wooden door and gawk straight at her distended
breasts whose rock-sharp nipples peaked out of the faded red satin
sale rack bra that was cutting into her senseless cobalt flesh, and
beam a heavy-lidded wink that asked "Eloi, Eloi, I'm come, are thee
ready?" , His meticulous gaze coursing down to her haphazardly
protruding pubes, and as she stiffly swooned beneath His fiery eye
that was imprinting for all eternity into the Divine Memory the image
of her unclean high cut briefs, cringing as she had been taught by
Mom with shame at her soiled unreadiness, watching God bend, in
His peacefully harmonious and continuous movement, over her fetid
corpse, gasping "Oh, Father!" as He leaned down and kissed her full
upon the stony lips, with His trembling hand locked in hers to raise
her up, EU at last knew that the secret to liberty and fraternity and
peace is finding out what is utterly unimportant in life and so, free
of herself, that is free of her dirty underwear, she was not shy and
did not resist the restless tongue of God, and thus was carried up
to Heaven in full and clanging orgasm.