the twit

    2.22.2009

    poempost: another from the hermitage

    cabin: afternoon

    the drunk wasps--they
    come from under the wall.

    the farthest they make
    it is the screened windows,
    my chair, the light

    in the kitchen. i kill them
    with my shoe or magazine

    and sweep them under
    the wall, where they are
    reborn. air in the ice

    in the bourbon whistles;
    it either rains or snows.

    2.18.2009

    2.16.2009

    poempost: two from a january hermitage

    1. highway seven

    In the hills, a mountain
    fog: each house consumed
    despite all anxious light,
    and ghosts too soon.

    The car ensures the road
    beneath—a drive both dream
    and ritual: exit right,
    three lights, twenty-seven

    miles before the turn.
    The last match crumbles
    cold against the box—its
    smoke would last forever.

    Between rains, some dogs
    beside the road: a cloud
    of orphans—delinquent notice
    to feed the withering gods.

    2. the death of the impatient tree
    or: a seasonal poem
    or: a poem written in the voice of a seventh-grade literature textbook

    The death of the impatient tree,
    who thought each sun was spring,
    the forest all considered strange—
    though hardly a surprise.

    “He trembled,” said the oak,
    “for every landing bird.
    As if each winter rest would bring
    an hour more of sun.”

    “And hoped in every leaping fish,”
    returned the nearest pine,
    “an oracle of thaw, so thirst
    more than ice would give.”

    “So fully did each season love,”
    joined his mistress birch,
    “that hardly could he sleep,
    nor hardly wake, in such

    “Uncertain times as winter fades
    to spring. We could sit
    more calm in ambiguity;
    an early bloom, a late

    snow were such a mystery
    that hardly do I doubt
    he worried through more vital truths
    than any our roots could tell.”

    Throughout the spring, as Nature’s hand
    distributed their friend,
    each considered quietly
    and with different claim:

    whether the impatient tree
    had rings so tightly wound
    as to approach infinity,
    or whether he had none.