Steven Ross Smith
fluttering. 22

river is absence. bankless. waterless. Lessing speaks of
brainwashing. the advanced techniques that seep into our
hidden crannies when we're not looking with the third eye.
(most of the time). stay there giving us directions. steer
us to what we do not have. by tension, relaxation. despite
bridges. driving over i know it is down there. i am in its
deep fog. memory of river. absenting. memory sings the
losses. such a mournful song, its words flitting among the
gaps. repeat. this poem clatters. ice fog song. no song. ice
absence. poem shaping the emptiness though the mist makes
the lips heavy with frost. constriction. so much of this
trying to mouth is this way. stiff from protraction of
waking and reawaking. the river rigid and in ruins. the fog
as you approach it, is a white swirl. in its centre all is
colourless. slogans, songs evacuate. you steer. press your
lips together. words go blind.

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