April 7, 2010

Long night, short night
Big hellos and goodbyes
Dreams of conversation
Not a single ho-hum
How come the city it never sleeps at night

Gottfried Salzmann, Times Square (Feb. 3), 2008

Love Poem for Wednesday
-- by Sandra Beasley

You’re the day after Tuesday, before eternity.
You’re the day we ran out of tomatoes
and used tiny packets of ketchup instead.

You are salt, no salt, too much salt, a hangover.
You hold the breath of an abandoned cave.
Sometimes you surprise me with your

aurora borealis and I’ll pull over to watch you;
I’ll wait in the dark shivering fields of you.
But mostly, not. My students don’t care for you

or your lessons from the life of a minor god.
Can you hit the high C in our anthem?
Can you bench press a national disaster?

I fear for you, Wednesday. Your papers
are never in order. Your boots track in mud.
You’re the day I realized I didn’t even like him,

and the day I still said yes, yes, yes.
Sometimes I think you and I should elope,
and leave this house of cards to shuffle itself.

You are love, no love, too much love, a cuckold.
You are the loneliest of the three bears, hoping
to come home and find someone in your bed.

-- by Beth Woodcome

Emergency arrests summer and without a season
I am without night. A lack of it will not be grievous, but tremendous.

Tomorrow I will be called back to listless sheep
and endless women neighbors,

and I will go because someone says my mother could die.
I understand that there will be sun, even day, but that I won't see it.

Leaving here, I will rename this sea and call it gone.
There is a sense of hysteria with my vocabulary imploding so easily.

Leaving here, where it never gets stormy or dark,
even with the shades down, even with my hands over my eyes,

I will not agree to any form of love. I can not think of the possibilities
of a body next to me, a body in a bed, a body of infections.

I will go home and be good to my aunts who are crying.
I will be numbed, but carry what is left of tinctures

of evening and strawberry, fit to heal
things quietly, fit to stand up near sirens.

For My Wife
-- by Wesley McNair

How were we to know, leaving your two kids
behind in New Hampshire for our honeymoon
at twenty-one, that it was a trick of cheap
hotels in New York City to draw customers
like us inside by displaying a fancy lobby?
Arriving in our fourth-floor room, we found
a bed, a scarred bureau, and a bathroom door
with a cut on one side the exact shape
of the toilet bowl that was in its way
when I closed it. I opened and shut the door,
admiring the fit and despairing of it. You
discovered the initials of lovers carved
on the bureau's top in a zigzag, breaking heart.
How wrong the place was to us then,
unable to see the portents of our future
that seem so clear now in the naiveté
of the arrangements we made, the hotel's
disdain for those with little money,
the carving of pain and love. Yet in that room
we pulled the covers over ourselves and lay
our love down, and in this way began our unwise
and persistent and lucky life together.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

o sandra beasley!

4:14 PM  

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