the girl with the fake lashes knows
i like a double gin and i am telling sam
that i am a dog who was converted
when i was seventeen and my mother found an essay
about how i was in love with a girl
and there was a portishead reference
Each natural passing articulates
the unnatural: every aunt has a son
who fell, or a daughter who hid in rubble
for two years, until that knock of officers
holding a bin bag filled with a dress
I miss the elms, their "crowns of airy dreams,"
as Virgil calls them, their towering cathedral branching
spread into a ceiling above the lonely sidewalks of Ohio
where the first elm deaths were reported in America.
When I was his student, Stan used to say that a piece of writing is never really finished, but only rests. Perhaps, too, our love for a person or place, when it is true, is always unresting. Isn’t that, after all, what “Dutch Elm” implies?
What Sparks Poetry
January 13, 2020
POETRY DAILY MS 3E4 4400 University Drive Fairfax, VA 22030