by Laura Carter
Paisley Is as White as Nonce of Sky: Desire Is Whiter You call unto brotherly with a free hand or a color of surety or sack. When did you come from your hand into She-ness of a virtue? Which of you is talking from beyond a pale into a greater fastness or a call? For who is in this longing with fabulous meritocracy of your hands? You mean it as you go forth from your own heartache & far from a higher armor’s cut well—you touch once, you touch back, a tuché mended higher -than you have been. How you go is happier than a first thing you knew: your nights are certain & a body is weeping into fire. You hear in stereo; you hear in stillframes & cum: layered up around structure, you plant a sun & take home. Surely Ridden Has Known Hun You saw you from around a corner of yourself You saw in threes now you were in trenches coloring your face with a century’s desire—an opulent maelstrom of exactitude & crimson—a heart melt- ing in a bodily crux a corpse over which you stood as if in a living dream & swayed along with undulating rhythm of sole’s last footpath down into an open temple where you were sometimes by yourself & sometimes open to niceties of your theology & cosmological vision of sea & sand—it’s shifting—you’re opening—you’re not quite certain of an answer to this— where have you been o Methadone & Rimbaud glass at heart of a story You followed along & went there yourself with an army full of obeisance & glass as a moral is made of ribbons that one weaves around center of heartland, body of an America swept clean by intransigence & happiness of your love… Geometer’s Gymnastics in strange interpreter a stranger in blouse a hand color before you have come to put yourself here annealing flame in crux of each sixteenth-note; a star is a crumbling evisceration of body & tumult; your melancholy plants itself deep in each field that you encounter: You take one knife & place it in- to fire of your heart, plant zinnias at tone’s avowed parallax at dusk. But when you leave: you take these things into guitarist’s hands: a slipstream of rain, a guarded woman, your own heart’s fire. You once owned your shoulders but now you own your country….
Laura Carter is a poet and teacher from Atlanta.