Monday, April 28, 2008

POEM AT ALTITUDE

Whatever you take with you into ascent,
whatever you bring with your body
into the half air, the world above this one,

whatever you carry, whatever is
the design of your needs, take
these, too, these words which weigh nothing,

can’t be forbidden, won’t be
detected, confiscated, stripped
from you in the naked light

of security, which at the end is a lie,
whatever is left behind, missed
when it’s too late, in motion,

going and gone and up and away,
whatever you shed with speed,
keep with you this knotted

up bundle, made of air, these words
which are falling out of
the world like the sun,

because I can’t go or follow or trace
or point to the sky
with the blessed certainty

in the folds of every accordioned map,
because I am thinking
of a bird’s hollowed bone,

because all I once wanted
is not what I want
now, keep with you

whatever you want,
want these words
which are a prayer

to your return,
your safe return,
to your nearness.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

very sweet--thank you

Suzanne said...

Wow.

Anonymous said...

Very nice.

Peter G

Jett Superior said...

ohhhh, *guts*

Anonymous said...

words weigh a ton paul.. silly paul..at least these ones do.

anyonita jenea said...

you are my new favorite contemporary poet. i've listened to all your readings on fishouse. i've just ran out and purchased notes for my body double and cannot wait to get through it. i've also just ordered the resurrection of the body and ruin of the world. i cannot seem to get enough of your poetry, your voice, the flow. impressive. :)