Feb 13, 2007

I had a dream that I won a prize for a poem I wrote called "Justine," so I figured I ought to write one. Though I suppose because I have put it here, it means I will never win a prize for it.


JUSTINE

Justine views the carousel
through the mod angles
of the tent caterpillars.

She cuts her foot on the barb
of the horseshoe crab.

Justine feels cooler where
the jailhouse bands
of shadow hit, she knows
how the world acts
upon the body like a
sentence.

She thinks of the faces
of strangers, how they
ebb into & out of death.

All the faces that have ever
been pressed into the deltas
of air the arms
of the tree make.

Justine runs on the sand
& watches the man
with peach-colored
spectacles.

A star will dislodge
from its firmament
& she will know
it is all
a game, it is all
a question of scale.

Justine sees the olive trees
know the word
for mistakes, the bronze
fish lives in a pail
of salty water.

Justine wants to let it go,
but she knows it will
find itself
in the hungry wheel
of the riverboat,

propelled by parcels
of water along the bay
shaped like a comma
upside down. Justine looks up
at the sky & knows you
can’t look into the ground
in the same way. This proves
death is forever.

Justine will write her epitaph
in the aforementioned
sand, protestations of the quick
given to the sea.

Justine will wait until the lost
ocean things walk
back up upon shore. She knows
each thing will happen, if given
enough time:

A spider will inch backwards
up the wall, the sun
will turn to milk, the
shadows will burn onto the water
with the smell of wood;
in enough time, each
thing is possible, even
Justine.

2 comments:

Jessica Smith said...

i like this poem. it is a good poem for Justine.

sandrasimonds said...

very nice