Steven Ross Smith
fluttering. 48

the writing. it is not an adornment. not hobby. is core. is
not what you do in the wistful morning. or those
scribblings late at night. it is you. you  in the current
of meditators. you who reach beyond entertaintment and
investment portfolios. you who seek the unquantifiable
place. beyond the bleak and selfish. you live out the writer
rather than fit him in. you are not a time slot, or keyboard
or genius. damn cold today. you could tell by the stinging
ears, numb forehead. this line of thinking stops you. no
inspiration here. who cares about the weather or your
snagged thought lines? certainly not those birds - house
sparrow and northern flicker - jockeying at the bird bath.
they see a world completely different from your own. they
understand Wittgenstein. they will perpetuate in spite of,
or even without, your strained thinking. everything slipping
through the sieve of time. you have not been reading enough
poetry. too much aboutness. only as an infant did you live
in a state of pure experience. with the mouthing of language
began loss. it is all you have. it is nothing. with each
word you move farther from experience. hence the wisdom of
the sile!nt orders. knowing what you cannot know when filled
with words. full of words. full of loss. speaking of a place
made up. built on words. that substanceless substance.
Sorrentino loves digression, the looping leap even further
from innocence. Sorrentino who reaches across the water to
be young again. to rediscover orange before he knew its
name. pure. when he could laugh. before the words and memory
soaked everything into their serious holes. porosity. you
crawl down the tunnel of a sponge. your tongue dry.
hardening. the flicker tilts his bill to the sky, his head
back. at thirty below the water feels warm sliding down his
throat. are you making all this up, because you can say it?
what of this scene without its words?  what is being made up
that you have no words for? you laugh at yourself. you are
no philosopher. you are a dull mind. your tongue is dusted
thick with toxins. Robert Johnson is still singing from his
grave. dust my broom. his tune fusses at your ears with
something beyond the words. might be pure. pure digression.
watch for it. I want to watch says Emmett reminding me of
Peter Sellers' Chauncy, who likes to. and in another garden
Gunnars' rose nods and feathers its scent into the air. and
all this? all these black strokes filling this white space.
this clutter, detritus. who cares? it is all made up. up,
Emmett pointing at the light. nothing but light. mere
spectral waves and minute particles. all make illusion.
Wittgenstein again, everything we see could also be
otherwise, and if this is so, description is a lie. but you
know this. lying through your teeth. biting down on the
emptiness. you speak quickly to deceive the tongue. to fool
yourself back. the aftertaste is dust. 

The East Village Poetry Web