• Vol. 10
  • Chapter 12
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An Emily Dickinson Symphony

What mountains molt and sky skips into is not given you.
All you are is an I imploring this cozy clump of trees
to respond to your sparse spaces.
From where you stand inside your life,
everything rolls away everywhere, unfurling like
“wide old velvet sleeves, green things.”

But you, still a still fetus inside god’s grand tummy,
you cannot gather this “infinite contain.”

So pregnant with yourself, you hook your small time like a collarless coat
into mundane nothings: sex, groceries, passports, book clubs.

You go into these like moonlight down a stream: bound to fade.
For what fades faster than skin, stitched as it is deep inside
small time, a blue mass of blunders rippling in the wind.

So searing (open? opening? opened?) you roam your life,
photographing desire when all you want is a photograph of (your) desire.

But what if this picture you are listening to right now
as you stand on the steps just beyond its frame was just that:
your desire captured on a canvas, captured like a large animal
that feels more freedom inside a cage against which she can rage.

We do art because we are angry with the world.

What if this moment right now with your heart straining


An Emily Dickinson Symphony

all its chords to tune into this picture was your art
galloping towards you in triumph and in tragedy?

Horses from your future heralding with their hooves
the House of Large Time
that you have dreamed of entering all the days of your death?

Will you travel the path the picture is travelling and come
to its end where you are
what the mountains molt and the sky skips into.

Do you trust this music of words that is
blooming and blooming towards you?

If yes, then close the gate behind you.
If no, then the gate shall always like like this:
an open wound
your life keeps turning into.