At dawn, after they drove me
by emergency to the hospital, or
the mansion on the outskirts of the city.
Through the bleached fields
and positioned on the silver hillside.
To be alone doesn’t hurt that much
he wrote, in that poem
he wrote before he died.
After Trakl, and the translations of his writings
in which he writes of his own alienation.
Sebastian in Dream and his mother’s compulsions:
filling their Viennese home
so that there is no room left
for her children. In a dream,
the wanderer goes. My father,
when I was small, promised me
a shetland pony for my courage
after we moved, again. But then,
we moved again. From city to city.
Nomads, with no home. To live inside
one’s mind, is its own locked hotel room,
its own phantasm and cell. Its own
strange poem. Genet in his prisons,
loving the men, tending to them.
Strangers in hotel rooms reading my tarot,
begging me to touch them.
In Berlin and in Warsaw,
dreaming in Latin, with my hands.
STILL LIFE WITH POLAROID
In the black and white film still
from Chantal Akerman’s film,
Women from Antwerp in November
her face is tilted as if asking.
And her skin, above the lips,
is moist with sweat.
In the dream from which
I wake and can not sleep,
you are there with me.
Your kindness, an aura
seeping through the film
of the dream. And the rich
substance I wake encased in.
I have started taking photographs
of my own face
in an attempt to capture
the quality without language
I lost. Every morning
I record entries and snapshots
in a small black canvas binder
as if I might
be able somehow to find it,
and bring it back.
In photographs I always appear
ugly, who I am, hidden
beneath a cruel and sudden mask.
But in the small hours
I spent with you,
I was returned to myself.
And it was from that precarious place,
minute and near invisible,
that I was able to set
finally, everything down,
and begin my life again.
But whose voice will enter
and what will I do
with that brutal but beautiful music.
In the city, from my hotel window
I can see the elements and trace.
Structures constructed to protect the mind
and the gorgeous culture of the body.
In the park nearby, at dusk.
With plastic transistor radio
and magnetic apparatus,
so small they fit into the palm
of my hand.
FRAGMENT: HOTEL WARSAW
In the hotel room are stacks of magazines
and texts on photography, platters of food
and snapshots of the black and white photographs
in the montage work of the Romanian artist
whose work documents the space between.
I want to know that language.
I want to live inside it.
And I want my body
to lead me, not the mind.
But the body, it wants
to devour everything.
For instance, last night I swallowed
chocolate after chocolate
inside the hotel tub, while reading.
What the body wants
and the mind does not.
But the mind, it will not quit.
And still, I cannot stop
feeding it. Or the body,
its animal-like desire,
its dumb and blind
collisions, with everything.
Photo credit: Wikipedia Commons