06 August 2008

Mary Jo Bang

[from Mary Jo Bang's Elegy, 2007]

"In Order" Means Neat and Not Next

Night was next. At some point
On the train the outside dissolved
And she was sitting next to herself in a seat.
In a two-tone gray and blue vinyl seat
With hints of a previous sitter. The dim other
She'd tried so hard to revive but failed
Was staring back at her

Through grit and dirt glass.
These are my footprints, she thought
Looking at her feet, Mary Jo's in Mary Janes.
Made of parts, they nullified the notion of total
Wholeness. The absurd road was obliterated
And all of the moment was inside.
The body buried in time.

Time, a fickle list of numbers.
Sleep was the utopian fantasy
She wished she could fall into.
Eye to the window, to fate.
Feeling but not seeing. Out there was absence
And presence. Out there was a row
Of everything she remembered.

Elegy: Poems

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