You have to walk so close to the mirror Before your breath clouds the image You need to get a running start You need to get a running start To break through the refrain into repetition As exile's continuous form forms the same Words twice thrush thrush Drab bird unseen in the dark dark's underbrush Sung from the yeasty mouth * From within the cloud the voice sings The voice is a singing cloud You have to walk so close to breath Before you find the mirror And then beginning looks just like Beginning looks just like What doesn't know how to complete itself Otherwise What is there in saying house bridge fountain * bridge fountain gate jug jug fruit-tree window there I said them All and every all's this same Cloud's faulty tower is this same Cloud's broken column trying to make a point About breath by mentioning breath I stand so close to the surface of the thing I am dumb because I make myself dumb And then the apples go mute * Jug jug Make no noise Who will find you in the middle of your breath And keep whole all you want broken Someone becomes Someone again it must be done Mouth scaring bird from its ever more hidden nest A surface seems to know something about Depth depth cannot know about itself * Right toward the mirror Watch it fly as sometimes it does fly Breath and every cloud The sky has gotten a running start It's why the apples ripen even though they hurt The sky's running start Let panic return and stand very still You have to stand very still Before what is wounded turns around and nears * A note plays in the dark Plays all by itself in the dark just a note Just a note called escape What I'm telling you is what I cannot say Otherwise this Intimate breath is just another maze The sun disappears Inside the apple I mean there is a mirror In a cloud and right there is your answer
Copyright © 2012 by Dan Beachy-Quick. Used with permission of the author.
Dan Beachy-Quick is the author of several books of poetry, including gentlessness (Tupelo Press, 2015).
Date Published: 2012-06-14
Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/portrait-0