30 May 2011

Julie Carr

[from Julie Carr's Sarah – Of Fragments and Lines, Coffee House, 2010]

Western Wind: An Ode

One's mother's brain's
like one of those egg sacs

that lists by slack waves of seaweed and gull-prints –
still speaking abundance – found washed up to rotting

wood of a trap

Trees without leaves and dogs without leashes
simmering wheels of company cars

The body's a hole through which other bodies move

Lines for a Storm

So he plucked out his feathers, went and sat by a tradesman's shop
and wept.

With the sunflower nodding and the sirens on steady, she wakes to
answer the phone.

Kissing the deck with superstitious ardor, the hand with his cap on
is filmed.

And he walked the globe with feet of lead, and she in a window
of dust.

Pale blue lines between banks of dark cloud had no choice but to
become America.

Wept and wailed until he lost his senses – when the cook came by he
gave her pepper when she asked for salt, wheat when she asked for rice.

Two thousand soldiers in the Union army suffering from nostalgia.

And though many of the afflicted were hospitalized, the most serious
cases were allowed to return home.

Running as ocean-froth or cloud-wisp in storm-wind, a memory of
her small lap her salt scent her blue beads and her eye, blinking.

Parents, advised to train their children to master their emotions, sent
them from home so they might grow accustomed to movement and loss.

And she, in this torrent, dissolves.

Julie Carr

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