The Only Garden
The only garden exists for the passers-by, never
Belongs. Here, no one’s ever seen anyone else.
Self is a pair of moving eyes, in which the images
Of sound, color and wind conceive themselves.
Red canna petals iced with snowflakes,
Plum flowers, greenish white, fluttering like butterflies,
Wreathing the green abdomen of a big katydid
That shines like a woman in late pregnancy.
The one-armed dusk with the hand in its trouser pocket,
The finial iron fences with rusty bars.
I have circled the garden three times, and upon my reaching
A picket, all the tiny mouths in the section clam up.
There is a statuette under a tree that watches so intently
How a snake shed its skin and emits dim light of a brook
That when I come near, it is startled and freezes into stone,
A slender crescent of tongue grown between its lips.
The buildings are vampire’s teeth into the night sky,
And my finger points at it, like a glass cutter rolls around,
Enclosing so many different constellations in one irregular circle.
My finger bends and spring, flipping at those canine towers,
And a piece of paper wobbles down, dotted with stars.
She sits under a walnut tree, as if in the tent of a quilt,
Reading with a flashlight The Little Red Riding Hood,
She, an orphan, among the guarding ghosts of her grandmas.
August 24, 2008