Childless, I am in a house on the ocean-edge
of a national park. Nights, I consider broadcast horrors. This is not
my house. I am a stranger, a newcomer. So often, too,
is the horror. Passes time. Passes time. Past time lights
up my liturgical tendencies, illumines past time, my lovelies.
Here, in this room, in this house, the light is sometimey as always.
Clouds. Wind and all. Pronounced through windows onto woods, onto lawns.
Say “Light casts its tender hieroglyphs on the mundane
and cataclysmic equally,” and fancify a nothing, go straight
for an inaccuracy that distracts and passes time.
And light comes before the hieroglyph, and (as marker)
these hieroglyphs give meager insight into the “nature” of light beyond
some minor perceptions. And what? Shall I ride the alliterative waves
of articulation and silence that fog my mouth and mind? Or just let
the words like particles roll? See where and what this accrual of syllables gets us?
It’s midday, and you are both years before the you to whom this poem
whispers, before the women with whom these syllables conspire. Lullaby, loves,
this ain’t. I have become a woman who screams softly. Maybe an over-abundance
of caution? Of caustic care? Well, I’ve seen the clips and memes, heard the murmurs
and corporate decisions meant to mark-up and mock the nature of you that’s well beyond
easy perception. In past times,
I’ve been medicated out of my self, locked under
an atmospheric feeling, the condition of which would not relent, which could will “will not”
to relent. Wheels of wheeling won’t re-
lent. Absolve your self sunken between
Breath breath breathe and the toxic dirt.
Copyright © 2019 by Tonya M. Foster. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on June 3, 2019, by the Academy of American Poets.