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Centrifuge Analysis

Author: poem of Dean Young Type: poem Views: 7

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It might have been midnight when last we talked

and now I've got this poem that keeps flying

apart which accounts under these xenophobic stars

for all force: gravity, magnetism wind, the ling-

ering of a kiss, a judo throw although

there's yet to be a single formula for it.

Save us from single formulas.  One room

smells like ash, another smells like fruitcake.

One cardinal sits on a branch, another under.

You've got to be a bird to understand any of this,

feathery and hollow-boned.  You've got to be

a claims adjuster staring at a storm.  You've

got to be entered by a shower of gold coins.

On the back of a Brazilian book of poems,

the translator looks haggard as if she's chased

a mule cart into another century, the twentieth,

and suddenly she's feeble in Pittsburgh in her

bunny furs.  Imagine, suddenly Pittsburgh,

the handful of dust thrown up for the sun's

haughty inspection, laughing its molecular

laugh, hungry again, dazzling again it its

stained satin pajamas like the memory of lost

love.  I think we were walking though some woods

towards more to drink, up ahead the future

gesticulating wildly like a beggar who'd

scare us out of money, the future threatening

to isolate us like glum geniuses prowling

record stores, not getting a lot done,

mistaken for clerks with gum on our shoes. I'm

trying not to panic.  I'm trying to find the center,

drive a nail through it like a mercy killing.  I'm

letting myself be thrown around while Come at me

says the day to the night.  Come at me says

the cloud to the moon dragging its terrible noose.

Come at me says L so she can show me what she's learned

in martial arts and now some part of me can't or

won't get up, the ground husky with thaw, fall's

idiot nomenclature garbled in the bramble.  I'm

letting my back get soaked. I'm turning into wine.  

I'm a broken kore, lips barely parted saying

what?  I know suffering does not make us beautiful,

it makes us disappear like wearing black shirts

at midnight, like lying on the spinning earth

crying, Momma, Momma.

Submitted by Jen.


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