Here’s a rosetta stone I’ve whittled
to live for a breath and then, blithering, wither.


        the grass like crystallized lime pulp splayed
        to a bristling pelt—

and that’s my benediction.
                                                 And your anathema?
for another day.

       dandruff, death, indignance, doddering,
       bricks disheveling murmurous doorways,
       slighted sills and lethean lintels—

how do you get to Carnegie Hall?

It depends on where you’re coming from, doesn’t it?

        finer than fireflies flicker like hobbling porch lights,
        shrunk to the seed of an alien inkling;
        finer than ironstone china passed
        like salmon slap around floundering bear claws;
        finer than crazing platters punched, percussed, impacted,
        shrapnel packed in impervious heirlooms
        fierce as a mother’s impeccable itch; still
        finer than paper cuts,
        finer than bubbling blood or
        the filliping pinch of a kibitzer—

Bankers’ nieces seek perfection—

Finer than that,
and relish and marmite, too.

        the alluring gut of a wryly wassailing clowder’s queen,
        like patchwork batting or distaff snagged from
        bedraggling mists unpinned from escarpments,
        dormice suckling fractured thorns—

The velveteen innards of novelty.

                                                               Bless you.

       Promiscuous silverskin sleaved from sinew.

…that’s a wrap?

                             Well, I still need a deathbed confession,
and they’re becoming increasingly harder to come by.

       Where Napoleon hides his hand,
       that place where the atom’s split
       to allow some meddlesome welter of weaver ants
       water and board and hospitable homecoming.

So not the Sadie Hawkins dance?

                                                            No, Sadie’s there,
and boring her cheek through an open bar.

        the cataractous gaze you’d cast in a delicatessen—

Because of the gout?
                                      Because of the olive loaf.

And should you transpose it to C?
                                                             To see—see what?