Day 197

I need you tonight,
moon, am collapsing in
the curve of you.  I found 

a wrench in the street this morning.
I need you tonight,
throwing tools 

(I am afraid to use)
before me, am reaching to cradle
my own knees— 

bruised by misjudgment.
These arms, these fingers are too
stiff. Right tighter, left 

looser, bolts land
arranged in a pattern. I found
it could help 

reckon through clouds,
stars aligning behind.

If You Please

Regrets only
raise the lower
tree line equally. Bottom
leaves hidden from sunlight, they die 

at the same rate. If I succeed
in not showing up
for another family pageant to appear
before you a doom 

eager stranger mouthing
simple questions
about your coniferous forest,
I just might dig up my balance 

beam in this black dirt.
Just might please the wind
to respond through your branches overnight.

Prayer (Day 324)

When I look at the moon, I believe in God
in phases. Because he who rapes the body no
longer rapes thought, I said, “no.” 

When I look at the moon, I believe in God in pauses
revealed in shadow giving consent to light. 

When a new moon gives back
the whole sky, I’ll begin
to believe this body is mine.

Art of Seduction

Are you Flaubert’s least
untrue, she won’t dare
ask for fear

your reply might smack
her cheek, lick her lip,
keep her

reaching for more
paint and wall.

Day 1,487

I am the scriptio
inferior, I am
the underwriting
of myself. I cannot 

wash away the dialogues
I have had with amnesia,
cannot forget
my desire to be seen. 

With each alcoholic
palimpsest, I became
powder, irretrievable,

to myself. With each
reprieve, I am making
a record of what my disease
did not erase.

Preparing for the Change

September rain not really falling,
but has fallen. Clouds mess 

with her chance to witness
another civil 

twilight. But a western gleam
signals another shift. And 

she wishes she could find the hidden white
pine forest, tucked into it 

creek, where she would be safe to write
his name in the needle bed
dirt without 

getting found out.
But branches get so heavy 

this time of year. Hotter 

and hotter, later till
that moment when it gets very cool.

Muse in Relief

I carve you alive
with my own
chiseled lips. I make you
because I was made
by another

nervous dreamer.
Your brows are
what rise when I’m done
with your face.
You smile—

with your flat
stone eyes
and male mouth,
but it’s those brows
you give me

to unwrap myself with
when my own
next sitting draws near.