Without Words

Ready? I couldn’t be
more so. Bronze and
hollowed out. A representation

of a shell to protect
living flesh from otherworldly
showers, I live

in imagination. My darkened
green sleeves peering
through heavy

snow—a figment of a woman’s
realized. Disembodied
lips and an armless mannequin

pillar dance with me
on marble over grass. Who’s
watching? Everyone—and
I am cleansed.

(Inspired by Judith Shea’s sculpture of the same name)

It’s a Three Dog Day

On the 8th floor in April. All graffiti
is political. No bullfrogs in the sculpture

garden that I can see. I would bring
in my gecko

if I had one. Taggers
wrote on the spoon

bridge but not
the cherry. A question that gets erased

before answering—the nonsense
can be the best part.

Sculpture Garden

I see a rainbow reflection on the cherry
spoon of its own making—fountain’s
mist. Sun’s been shining
all day. And I know
I can break
my own heart.

Visit

To climb this side
of a grassy knoll in platform 

heels, to find relief
in the reliable 

presence of a Noguchi
sculpture outdoors 

in the Midwest, to not get lost
in America, is to be 

this alone
on wooden planks unafraid 

of those who barrel through,
of a sunset she can’t 

quite see.  It is to fear only 

the absence 

she recognizes in trees’
fluttering spiked leaves.

Irene Hixon Whitney Bridge

Would she know
balance if 

it knocked her off
this pedestrian bridge 

she stands on? Closed
for repairs starting tomorrow, 

it could be
another unreliable witness.