The Mind in State

Does consciousness exist only when
you name it?  Was the double helix a
stranger, the nucleus the  first brain?
I feel  therefore I am.  This  is  more
peptide than pep-talk. The tongueless
mood is sticking its tongue out at us.
The mountian  wool is  shaved into
vineyards. Without other there is no
self & and we are not always other of
other selves. Is the moon a self, is
wine or grape? The body & the as-if
body, taking time taste waking slow
rain healing grass.

Epithalamion

We hold the present responsible for my hand
in your hand, my thumb

as aspirin leaves a painless bruise, our youth
immemorial in a wormhole for silence

to rescue us, the heart free at last
of the tongue (the dream, the road) upon

which our hours reside together alone,
that this is love’s profession, our scents

on pillows displace our alphabet to grass
with fidelity around our wrists

and breastbones, thistle and heather.
And this steady light, angular

through the window, is no amulet
to store in a dog-eared book.

A body exits all pages to be
inscribed on another, itself.

Things You’ve Never Seen

When I tell it, the first time
I saw hail, I say
it was in a desert and knocked
 
a man unconscious
then drove a woman into my arms
because she thought the end was near
 
but I assured her
this wasn’t the case.
 
When he tells it,
he smiles, says the first winter
after their exodus
was the coldest.
 
Rare snow
came down, and his mother,
who knew what the fluff was
 
but until then had never seen it,
woke him and said, Look outside,
what do you see?
 
She called his name twice.
It was dark. Snow fell
a paragraph to sum up
 
decades of heat. He had
no answer. She said,
this is flour from heaven.
 
When he tells it,
he’s an old man returning
to his mother.

The Poem as Epiphyte

All this talk through a tunnel 
of kid gloves and landmines went underground.

You were catching my limbs
in sequels and spoofs, commemoration my organs

with friends lost, whose names like patients’ names.
Our clumped desire stirs and how

when unwound, as with DNA, it sweetly wounds us.
Hope in the right place, you said, is hope misplaced

or no hope at all. But I say, in my dreams I dream, 
in my dreams I do not hope.

Where were you when was I? Counting down
the decades for the prize as victim of our previous war.

Were you my cactus heart and kelp forest,
a gluttonous hunger I ate myself famished,

an app, a tower or two, and flew 
as a swan flies into a sand file that said, 

“No more monkeys dead on the bed”?
In my dreams the universe anneals for tents 

that fall like mamas from heaven.
And you were tablet and me pill,

surgery and me drone, firefly
and me shooting star, where

when my clone was made interminable 
no illness could.

And the space between raindrops a shelter,
the mountaintop a lake,

the gecko an oriole, the athel a bulbul,
and I was seagrass and you 

the banyan.