To Noah, From Wife, Some Years After
Brought back that glass box of ocean,
the glass a kind of ocean too but slower.
The green world was strange, nothing holy,
lots of space. When I looked too fast
at things they looked like ocean still, my
eyesight a splash of salt water
I didn’t actually own. The last
thing the boat/god said was study
the moment when water sees water. We
are married as the ocean is to its
glass self, is, is not, is.
(Published in The New Yorker, October 31, 2022)
When I say goldrush what I mean is how
the gold rushes into itself how the arrow
that broke me was me how it is ongoing.
(Published in Bowery Gothic V, 2021)
Script on Gold Leaf (3)
(There is a spring at the right side,
and standing by it a white cypress.
Even now, after the shine
on my ideas shook off in tinsel, I still
want things. Thirst is a handful
of local grit you can pick up glittering
anywhere. Thirst is a native tree
all over. When I got to the water,
they said and you are . . . ? I said I’ve been
leaning against this white-hot cypress,
reaching, all my life.
Detail of Paradise
(Giovanni di Paolo, ca. 1440)
Particularity evidently survives in paradise.
Your own uniform, the modesty of it, still fits.
Your bruises and cuts still glimmer.
The goldapple trees still stand up
like the very first numbers you ever learned,
and love’s sentence—I am so glad you’re here—is still what you say.