Do not forget that a poem, although it is composed in the language of information, is not used in the language-game of giving information. Ludwig Wittgenstein (1889–1951)

A poem is really a kind of machine for producing the poetic state of mind by means of words. Paul Valéry (1871–1945)

body of water

it happened again, this time
in front of a tank
filled with sea nettles and fish
as they sleepwalked all over
my screen, lavish creatures
spilling their watercolors
here and there
dancing their eurythmic names
i too became a body of water
for intercorpo real
webbed in the in between
crowned with seaweed
two blowholes for nothing
a spine dissolving
into a fabulous dream
people, this land mass
won’t hold, it is loosing
to sea 15 feet coastline per year
the time in the tub
my breath moving continents
and kingdoms of fluvial foam
rising and sinking and
rising and shrinking
when through pipes
i could hear the whole
universe sing
until the pling of an email
forced me up for air, too fast
when is ever a thought
announcing itself
not the rudest intrusion?

the vulnerable observer

two minutes in february

for two minutes in total
the sun laid herself
in my room today
a mouth speaking light
are you there still, little one
tired beams, through curtains
of granite, needles and trunk
towards a house in the shade
across the floor
dust lent her the substance
to be still and again.

struck and unprepared
low levels of d vitamin
no pen at hand
but a half eaten orange
my notebook buried
in a far away coat,
I laid my hands open
palms up
they said
we have nothing to give
and much to wish for.

it seemed as though
she just wanted
a body to dazzle
and on my palms
scrawly like a spider child
in her language of
a hundred silhouettes
what a joy to shine, little one.

the vulnerable observer

exposure therapy

only when heaving this winter stiffened body into another stiffer one
with sheets of floating skin atop
is it that one of the two bodies of water (guess who)

came to feel like a sinking turtle.
treading ice buckets
evacuating from banquets
followed by another plunge into panic.
in the throat the breath tastes blood. meanwhile two swans walk jesusly on water meanwhile seagulls sit first row

where is the floating door for once since hanging on to Rose’s lips
for life support of sorts
won’t do the trick.

drowning and thirsting
but both at once because
we are fish
Bowie said
but this fish ain’t swimming.
she wakes from a gargling dream
afraid to dive deep
into past into future
haunted by impossible ogres
until the mirror is calm again. understanding that you are water
& that water cannot drown.
who would I be if I hadn’t been frightened?

Black Out Poetry Project. Attempting to turn newspaper headlines on the climate emergency into poetry