Another Peripatetic Day (Day 2,621)

To be in motion and
at rest over ice, to walk
and talk of the prime 

mover and still not believe is
to be without
property, untaxed, free to choose 

temperance or the end
of grace in fits and starts.

Dead Drop (Day 2,620)

If she were to hide a circle
poem inside an ivy
covered tree, she might not leave 

any coordinates, map, unattended
bag. She might choose the inside 

of a piano for her next
cache, might decide to drop 

a bomb on the destination nearest
your heart.

Migration Mythology

If what I’ve heard is true, before there was an Ellis Island,
my great grandfather walked from Liberty 

State Park on the Jersey side of the Hudson
to the east side of the Connecticut River 

to settle into a milling
life. I can relate to that. If 

what I’ve heard is not true, I can relate
to all those letterboxers who’ve lost their find count.

Peripatetic Commute

To memorize obstruction,
or just its possibility
in debris flying from men
working, hidden patches of ice
on a side street side
walk, breaks 

into slivers too thin
to support the weight
of hope, too sharp
to be ignored.

Torch Spin

A fire in the machine,
someone wants a flashlight
clean if not erased. Early 

to everything, she never leaves her complete
linen stagnant, never forgets to remove lint
from communal mesh. Never 

fashionable, she brings this notebook
into empty clubs. She’s never really alone—
knows her way in any kind of darkness.

Blue Hour

This cusp between
a tint and the taint
is where I’ll find you 

counting strings
and deeply dug channels
before dawn ruins the light.

For Sheri on Her 45th Birthday

She cannot translate darkness
from those days when the sun only exaggerates
cold, only teases with its light. The blank 

scrim separating her from us does not give forth
a familiar word or shape to fill
in with pointillist tools or hatched lines. It stares 

back without a batting, no shadow limbs
to move behind it, without one
eyelash dropping free 

on her cheek. She can only see as far
as it opens before her—all of a life truncated
at 22, more than twice that
number of years swinging 

without interpretation. What tongue
do the dead whisper in as they do the math?

Who’s Minding the Gap

No dead chubby child
with wings can help
me now that I suffer 

tip of the tongue spells
more than I care
to remember.  Myths 

recounted in another
language mean as much
to me now that he’s been 

alive. Departing.
Sounds like (he) fled.

Anjinhos (Day 2,613)

Before this incessant counting,
I blended days
with nights
into a potent tonic.
Not for sipping. I began 

to erase light
with thickened walls
of ice and stone. When melting
followed, I blamed all 

I’d rubbed out.
I know it’s not the numbers
or letters that keep me alive.
But I’m certain they have wings.

Water Dancer

for Sheri

She knows every inch of the dock,
every splinter, barnacle,
hurricane seam. 

It is not a plank.
It is just where she walks.
And she knows how to dive,
has been doing it for years. 

No easing shore side
into the wash for her,
she plunges in and is “used to it”
before others wake. 

This is underworld—closets,
caves, roads, the drag
of undertow. This is where she should
live, she who in her heart is a sponge
is a sponge is a sponge. 

It is laying out to dry,
the exposure to air,
the rising sun. It is her death
to be before all of you. In performance,
she will never work a room,
works the ocean floor
for all it’s worth. 

Leave her uncontained.  She would rather
paint kisses—watercolor running—
than be confounded by a mirage of roses
she cannot reach, without a body
unprotected by skin.