Tim Earley


He tried to repatriate his edges:
a dust mote is a hum in the throat
between distillate sticks and their lovers:
I have learned to distrust
the siren wail of alcoves
banked in garbage bags, sun:
the ghosts are yellow and unapologetic with sermons:
a story of consciousness:
what is the girl stricken with melancholia to do,
the leg pulled behind her head at a rakish angle,
the blindfold barely serviceable? A story of deliciousness:
the man said Yes in the face of many loaves and sins,
Yes in the face of the caterwauling edifice
the natives constructed, Yes until his spirit
leaked into Monday: she is only trying to overturn
the turnstile with rhapsody, leaving logic to fingers
and birds to birds: I found part of my brood
wandering the hillsides of Bulgaria: green steaming
litanies of cow shit and bees: a cloak the only answer
to each inquiry the clouds plied into his back:
his cane serpentine and ruthless on the spine
of one memory: always in the direction of God
a fable or new responsibility lies: a story of forgiving:
as long as my skin is an electric mesh erupting
with wires and white noise
it will be difficult: a story of the alphabet:
tongues scraped eyes clean of their swagger:
we are only trying to pull the sadness
from the girl's insides: terror spreads through a clavicle
as easily as the violin: a story of danger:
imminent prison, thready release.



It is cold in a way that makes you forget
the other person's hands.
You pour milk from a carton into a tall glass,
to keep the milk pure and others pure
from your filth.
You ask questions after engagements large & small,
Is my body an ocean of cells roiling
through green-filtered light, is it time
to stop moving yet?

The notion of being born again
is alchemical, a blued mixture
of the irreducible hairs on one's head
& the secular humanist tradition
of gambling compulsively.
There are quiet times that feel almost sacred,
in which you would do anything
to do anything to the Miserable Lord.
Instead you say to him, Miserable Lord,
come down here and help me close
this book & get out of bed.
If you do I promise
I will wave to the birds & gossip sweetly
among newspapers. The body
is comprised mostly of bones & stitches.
It is snowing again,
and the heart is no poultice.
The day is ripe for prospecting,
the open country pornographic
with its sidereal experiments.
The body is no more a misery
than an organ or a star.
I have been walking to greet
my last idea of you.
The dog on the hill barks
like a tyrant, reducing your mouth
ripe with words or us to the smallest
zero of thieves. However many arms
there are among you,
someone's is always moving.



Whose nervy pluck
is anyone's guess,
back in the day it floated
around like dandelion whiskers
or nebulae and even
a baby could grab handfuls
and stride away. I lean
to three sides and only four
people exist who can tolerate me
and I love those four more
than is natural or right
and hope to walk through them
plowed past meaning
which is a pipe dream
in a colander all mixed up,
but in present tense I don't care.
Lately, I've taken to mounting.
The deed is decadence,
each accoutrement needs
a real fire to show
a slow fire what a fake fire is,
or else a lingering among clocks,
head full of wheels pummeling
into the ravenous next.
The bizarre cross-patterns
an evolutionarily perfect
attention-getting device.
These undulations have been out-evened:
happiness is such strange flesh and fish
have such strange happiness and sadness
is arranged through the fidelity
connecting air and avenue.
It is still necessary
to say I am not like them
(all these claws and feathers
and horns and sparklies)
before the tongue balks
its toys into repose
and I fall in love with more
than hair. A pickled nascence
becomes me--I am desperate
because I am true.
The thing the rose knew
the scouring knew
the face knew
the branch knew
implied a funny gloom,
so my brain replicated
the dead thing's webbing,
issued forth
as golem and skiff.
Sky-riddled figures
enhanced the widening view,
and insisted that only a strange rowing
can cure such ancient grief.