instead of going back just let it happen

O hard
Naharin
will i
have to learn to decode
your language and one day
dispense it?

A cold palm grips the sternum of a half-ripe leaf.
                                                                             Going back
a leaf leaf
creases and misses
and breaks against marley.

O

Hard
Naharin
will i
have to learn to understand
how to
get things
d.o.n.e.?

Sink into the frost of water – it caves and catches

a leaf leaf leaf
ceases and seizes
and breaks into marley.

                                                                             Instead of going back
                                                                             Just let it happen.

The tree has leaned
its branches into
the next genre of sun.

Deva

bolak balik:

her body a bearer of histories that can be
embossed but not embodied,
the trinkets that drip off her fingernails
are silver and gold,       rings       pendants     earrings
tinkling into rows of teacups,
some kind of what-else-but-
chocolate      milo     ovaltine     coffee.
she is no longer calling for new names.

bolak balik:

how does it feel
to drink chai     cha      teh        tea
and taste them in shades
instead of rooms?
O bearer of histories engraved, your
pot     bowl     melting     salad            cream
on a confused tongue,
piercings looking in every direction.

bolak balik:

i run my fingers across her palm,
a creased lease of generations,
folding here. between strips of
languages this is what she cradles:
a kind of heavy,
the gift of a birth you cannot
hold, and the cold of jewellery
pressed against skin.

pulsepulsepulse

OH, I WAS TEARING UP A POEM
I FORGOT WHAT IT WAS ABOUT
THE CHICKEN HAS FOUND ITS TAIL AND THE DOG’S
EGG IT IS HERE
A LUMP OF FLOUR WAS IN MY HAND
POWDERS IN MY EYE
I WAS STRETCHING OUT A NOODLE
MY DEAREST CHILD
SUDDENLY I LOST ITS BEGINNING I
BROKE ITS END
END
ND
END
END
D
I WENT TO DISCARD THE SHORT FINALES
I LOOKED DOWN
AH, THERE IS MY POEM

ckh lug ckh lug

one day it feels like i have
broken in this body, on

others it is a horse still
made of wood: lined
linoleum, lined light
against rich across
marble, its faces lined up
against the This and the
Aways. it is wearing legs
that have not yet learned
to tell differences.

on some days i break this body
into two, five

on others. on all of them
the ribbons unfurl to
assemble
the same layers under
nail beds.

between the pieces
the body strangles out a cry.
its gait is imposable
as the shadow of a hoof.

between each plate is a
rusting momentum,
rocking from the Agos
away that cannot be recalled.

greetings to the forever hardness!
the wide-open thighs of Either/
Or. everything lives
in its rhythms, singing the
same canter in their dagger voices –
the ones that have
not yet learned to tell their bridges.

how many
joints do i have
today?
in the lucky seconds
i hear the waters siphon.
one day i will break a
foot and i will not know.

On a rock placed on a partially inflated plastic bag

A rock is holding its breath. One look and you understand how the distance between orange and blue is a question of weight. The textures of a stone have mastered its craft –turning solidity into a ripple of water, that which floats upon a child’s sleeping cheek. If you listen to the rustle it makes, you know how nothing can remain sharp enough to puncture. Is the rock or the water heavier? What is it that makes your palm tremble?

pulsepulse

DO YOU TRUST YOUR BODY?
WHAT DID IT PROMISE YOU THAT IT CAN NOW BETRAY?
TELL THE SUN WHERE A LEG SHOULD GO.
SHOULD IT COHERE WITH THE HALOES OF RAYS
OR THE FLATS OF GRASS THEY MISS?
TELL THE SUN HOW MUCH A BACK CAN BEND.
DOES A GOD WIRE HIS OWN SPINE FROM GLASS
FOR HEAT TO MOULD IT TO AN IMAGE?
TO WHAT IMAGE DOES ITS GAZE REFLECT?
DEMAND FROM LIGHT AND HEAT YOUR ENERGY BACK.
DO YOU DARE RETRIEVE YOUR PAST FROM THEIR FINGERS,
OR YOUR FLOATING FROM BETWEEN THEIR TOES?
WHICH BODY OF LANGUAGE DO YOU STILL INHABIT?
TELL THE SUN. TELL THE SUN. REACH YOUR TONGUE TOWARDS
ITS ORANGE STOMACH AND LISTEN FOR THE RUMBLE
OF THE WORDS THAT ARE STILL IN USE.
CAN YOUR ELBOW STILL HOLD UP YOUR HEAD?
DOES YOUR ANKLE LATCH BEHIND YOUR NECK?
IS IT YOUR BODY YOU CANNOT TRUST, OR IS IT THIS
LANGUAGE IT SPEAKS, THAT THE FLESH NO LONGER
RECOGNISES AS ITS OWN?

are you as small as my peeling cuticle

i am trying to say something new,
something new that must! be said.

i am trying to say something that
might still mean something to you.

i am trying to say something that after breath and tongue
are swallowed, lights a fire atop a hill.

i am trying to say something that speaks for itself,
that asks not for my pen but a carpet for stale shoes.

i am trying to say something new.
i am trying to say something new.

i am only trying to find a cut of freshness
in which something drying can roll out its will,
palms past its milieu.