Tuesday, March 18, 2008

All around the living ones by JKD

After Rufo Quintavalle's "New: Election Day" posted yesterday.

There are poppies in the rain and the
train pulls round the bend of poplars
and layers, historic, catapulting
pinned to the pining pinwheel of his
lapel and fire-brand red poppies in
her hair or mouth the color of when
all round is a living one, a rounding
careening version of so plausible as
his hands once were, the places known
to her like whispered nothings, voice
now winnowing through the heath
her head in ribbons in retrospectives
of once before when wherefore lost
names in the buried field birds sanded flat
soar over and when the point is just as
obsidian as the poppy-seeds in the mind
of the passing paper boy on his bike in
the beginning of a century unrecalled
in a series of dates recorded blankly for
schoolchildren in classrooms to recite one
after another incantations for marks and a field
before these bodies under the soil the root
systems the teeth chattering as the steam
engine chugs black smoke Carthage and Windsor
and dark crannies of the book’s folds, the poppy-
petal silk stocking unpinned for him to
roll down her thigh a last breeze the
anxious race of the lad with the day’s bold news
leaking off the cover, running in the rain, grey
over the poppies wavering seaweedlike
on their surfacing underwater messaging
what cannot do what mustn’t then list
1914, 1918, 1939, 1944, 1950, 1968, a
dozen dozen times two hundred thousand
and the waving kerchiefs and the windblown
hair bright as poppies in his eyes turning
down the lane to say a poppy is a count of
poplars by the poppy field not so bold so
brash as or credible this and counting
orange as this or this or this, the buried
ones bones in her throat as many flames

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