Published on Academy of American Poets (https://poets.org)


Chateau If

         If love if then if now if the flowers of if the conditional
if of arrows the condition of if
         if to say light to inhabit light if to speak if to live, so
         if to say it is you if love is if your form is if your waist that
pictures the fluted stem if lavender
         if in this field
         if I were to say hummingbird it might behave as an
adjective here
         if not if the heart’s a flutter if nerves map a city if a city
on fire
         if I say myself am I saying myself (if in this instant) as if
the object of your gaze if in a sentence about love you might
write if one day if you would, so
         if to say myself if in this instance if to speak as
another—
         if only to render if in time and accept if to live now as if
disembodied from the actual handwritten letters m-y-s-e-l-f
         if a creature if what you say if only to embroider—a
city that overtakes the city I write.

Credit


from Some Values of Landscape and Weather © 2003 by Peter Gizzi. Published by Wesleyan University Press and used by permission.

Author


Peter Gizzi

Peter Gizzi was born in 1959 and grew up in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. He is the author of several poetry collections, including Archeophonics (Wesleyan University Press, 2016).

Date Published: 2003-01-01

Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/chateau-if