the grasses in meadows run faster than me. their winds rise.
children sleep when leaves are silver. when she’s in that world,
she doesn’t look at mirrors in the dark.
because that is how we get through. denial—is leaving the fire burn.
as i walk in this house—the ceilings so high—
the drapes the shape of large cloaked women.
someone is speaking through the walls—

my grandmother is cleaning out her oven.
someone has already spoilt her rinsed wooden floors. she pinches
me with her mouth. i have heard people speak—words with soft
curves—the silk of small lips. she is too angry. worrying about children
she can’t send away on trains—steam over—transudation of perspiration—
heavy as tears.

all the people we know are blind. there is tissue paper between
the words she speaks. like a veil to soften the commitment of weddings.
children who are saved from war must leave their mother. their father
leaves them first. so he is a soldier now. children who are too young—
sleep awake in crypts. it is dangerous for people who never stand
upside down to try to decipher them.

it is safer not to be understood. it gives me some sort of integrity.
the sky—blanks. of gold and silver. it is ash. the cock of the gun—the muzzle
in our mouth. i want to look at the picture i painted in my breakfast
bowl. if i stare at it all day, the hinges on images start to move.

i will wait for the baptism in the west—confirmation at noon.
i will marry my father with my mother again.
the last sacrament—the birth bleeds meat in my hand.
the east sky—arouses. the needle clicks into space. this last day. the first pulse.