in the middle of the world, breathing — Mary Oliver, What Is There Beyond Knowing
Summer for prose and lemons, for nakedness and languor,
for the eternal idleness of the imagined return,
for rare flutes and bare feet, and the August bedroom
of tangled sheets and the Sunday salt, ah violin!
When I press summer dusks together, it is
a month of street accordions and sprinklers
laying the dust, small shadows running from me.
It is music opening and closing, Italia mia, on Bleecker,
ciao, Antonio, and the water-cries of children
tearing the rose-coloured sky in streams of paper;
it is dusk in the nostrils and the smell of water
down littered streets that lead you to no water,
and gathering islands and lemons in the mind.
There is the Hudson, like the sea aflame.
I would undress you in the summer heat,
and laugh and dry your damp flesh if you came.
One lover has forgotten
that the strain without which it cannot be held
in place is equal to the force
with which it was pressed together
It seemed lovelike
so the lover said it, and said it
and said it
said it said it said it
not only at candlelit dinner by the river but
at the bookshop at the traffic lights at the
sink washing Japanese sweet potatoes
at bedtime at dawn (whispered) at morning
tea afternoon tea and once at the end of a large
of Italian mineral water
And the other lover begged with distress
equal to the force without which
it cannot hold
Would you just would you please
stop saying it
this is daniel, a poet. he writes for thistle magazine through an epistolary series entitled a castle of books. daniel: a soul i could not do without and a friend.
for everything else, thank you.
There is still one more
One I love more than anything in the world
I give my whole self to her like a pepsin because she needs a tonic
Because she is too soft
Because she is still a little fearful
Because happiness is a very heavy thing to bear
Because beauty needs a nice quarter-hour’s exercise every morning
We don’t want to be sad
It’s too easy
It’s too stupid
It’s too convenient
It comes up all the time
It isn’t smart
Everyone is sad
We don’t want to be sad anymore
—Blaise Cendrars, South American Women, 1924 (trans. R Padgett)
n. the tendency to give up trying to talk about an experience because people are unable to relate to it—whether through envy or pity or simple foreignness—which allows it to drift away from the rest of your life story, until the memory itself feels out of place, almost mythical, wandering restlessly in the fog, no longer even looking for a place to land.
thistle magazine closed their submissions a few weeks ago and now winter tangerine review is accepting an unlimited amount of written pieces for 24-hours. support art and independent publication by spreading the word and submitting yourself x
(i have crazy ideas in my head; projects and titles and names that begs to be let out and sent to the world. i so badly need a partner. find me my soul mate, find me a kindred soul.)
Let’s undress & let our bodies float above us.
The moon is new as pitch & given
enough time, the river will brush out the mountain,
so it is better to start off with sex
than with longing. We call this fashion. But the bed
& the tumbling of bodies, this is an ending.
Then how do we begin? Fully clothed.
No. This is boring. Yes. We need tits.
No. Less terminal. Ankles? Yes. Wrists.
Yes. Vulnerable. The memory of both soft spot & skull.
Yes. Let’s just make a pair of cat faces for a masquerade. Or
give me your hand & we’ll meander. Forget the moon,
the mount, the ocean & the hard-on. Forget the body’s tangle.
We don’t need the ocean. I know. I’ve seen every beachhead
from Normandy to your doorstep &
this is not the ocean. This is oxygen.
Listen. The moon is pitched & new again. No more, no less.
Listen. Cartilage. Bronchiole. Alveolus. Artery. Night sky.