Twenty Twenty Vision
Unwinding in a cavernous bodega he suddenly Burst out:--Barman, these tumblers empty themselves And yet I persist; I am wedged in the giant eye Of an invisible needle. Walking through doors Or into them, listening to anecdotes or myself spinning A yarn, I realize my doom is never to forget My lost bearings. In medias res we begin And end: I was born, and then my body unfurled As if to illustrate a few tiny but effective words-- But--oh my oh my--avaunt. I peered Forth, stupefied, from the bushes as the sun set Behind distant hills. A pair of hungry owls Saluted the arrival of webby darkness; the dew Descended upon the creeping ferns. At first My sticky blood refused to flow, gathering instead In wax-like drops and pools; mixed with water and a dram Of colourless alcohol it thinned and reluctantly Ebbed away. I lay emptied as a fallen Leaf until startled awake by a blinding flash Of dry lightning, and the onset of this terrible thirst.
From Soft Sift by Mark Ford. Copyright © 2001 by Mark Ford. Reprinted by permission of Harcourt Trade Publishers, published 2003. All rights reserved.