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you are a being unto yourself, with whom i have fallen in love, London.

May 27, 2007

SINCE I SEEM UNABLE to steady myself in this process of leaving London after 5 months, I spent the last several hours packing furiously, and then combing through my notebooks, dislodging a couple of lost ideas for poems i had made note of, which you will find below. I am eager to hold the people i love best in this world close again. But, London, to me you are a being unto yourself, and with whom I have fallen in love. It’s been the steadiness, the humming and the millions, and the parks, and the river, the graceful buildings, the charming chatter, the million million idiosyncracies of a rhythm i’ve learned to step in time with… It’s the city I love. And the city I will miss. Without the companionship of Londontown herself, I would have little life here to speak of…

Bee is blind.
Bee is blind to everything
but symmetry.
Symetros: same measure,
from the Greek.
And they say Galois
was the most romantic mathematician.
Did he glance down
to find the flowers symmetrical enough
to please a bee
on the morning of his violent death?

“Response to the piece ‘Forms Without Life’ by Damien Hirst, at the Tate Britain”

Look at the shells.
Look at the shells that were living
and then calcified
and then died lastly
when you took away the cool
soft flesh inside.
Look at the shells
strung up around your brown ankle.
People kill things to look at them.

“Response to the piece ‘Preserve Beauty’ by Anya Gallacio, at the Tate Britain”

They lose all their petals
bleed brown and drop
from between plastic panels.
Still red at the edges?
I’m surprised.
Isn’t that, after all,
where one first meets the air?

“Perhaps this Is Innocent Love”

She asked no questions
when her mother stood, in the hot train.
She leaned into the sweet calf
of her sleeping brother,
and pressed her bowed cherry lips
to his birthmark,
a small brown island
afloat on a milky sea.


Sulis, to Brittania
you are goddess
most lovely, long-limbed
and marked by fluidity.
Move, move through
the waters you lift from the sea
and lay flat again on the ripening fields.
nestles into you,
like the green clasp
at your chokered neck.

Minnerva, how far
you follow men of leather
thong and helmet tall.
Do you know where you go?
Goddess of wisdom, is it wise
to fight the waters?
You cannot strangle gentle
Sulis, nor rouse her to anger.

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