Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Lee Stern- Three Poems


Maybe there’s a space in the missing rain that I don’t know about.
And maybe you tried to tell me but I didn’t pay any attention.
Maybe there’re some directions I should have known about.
And if I had listened carefully to what you said,
I would have known what was going on.
But it’s the space in the missing rain
that compels me to tell you that I don’t know anything about the clouds.
If I knew anything about the clouds
I would stand on my feet and shout it out clearly.
I would write a new chapter about even the smallest ones
so there would be no misunderstanding.
And I would do all of that without even requesting payment.
Without standing in a place of benign memories.
Without asking why winter’s voices were lost
when the sounds of the faces were wet.


Maybe it was the strange way of breathing
that brought me to this place.
I was used to breathing with my mouth and my nose.
But these people used their words to inhale the air.
And it was that reason alone
that caused me to be attracted to them.
And sometimes the biggest words brought in the least amount of air.
In other words, just the opposite of what you might have thought.
It was like a whole language that was dedicated to their lungs.
And in between checking out other possibilities, that was what I thought.
And I also thought that the smallest words
held onto the air for the longest time.
And I didn’t want to become bedridden so I had to agree.
I had to measure the words I inhaled.
And the simple cloth upon which I recorded the edge of their days.


I can remember most of the things you told me.
I can remember the playful things and the serious things.
When you told me that an oak tree
had to be planted somewhere,
I went out of my way to remember that.
When you told me that everybody had to ring a bell,
and not mistake it for anything else,
it was the same thing and the same reaction.
And when you told me that you were going to love me until the end of tomorrow,
I had no choice but to keep those words in front of me like little parachutes.
Dangling in the weather.
Colliding with hopes wearing thin.

No comments:

Post a Comment