November 11

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More North than home,
this morning-still forest–

dull today, awaiting
more snow, more sky, more

anything– a drowsy
forest, half-sleeping

under packed-down ice,
still dirt where the sun

breaks through, on some days,
but not this one, no more day now

than hours ago, barely more
than night, the sun somewhere

in its low arc, somewhere
under these insulating clouds,

very little moves, the lake
comes as a surprise, so silent

at its banks, even my breath
lingers a little too long

after I turn to return,
an offering to

the coming months,
more supplication than gift


October 6

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Ungrateful returns. The wind batters
the gingko, a cardboard box sails by

six stories up. Absence grows familiar,
still, unpalatable. There’s a different

sort of beauty in these
geometric nights, so abstract,

divorced from messy life. A light
goes on, a light goes off. You wrote

from London, it’s nearly dawn there, now.
Or then. I still wake and wonder where

I am. This sky is toothless gray,
no stars for all the light

but still too dark to see,
and everywhere, and everyone, to be.

September 20

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traffic sounding almost
like the tide

this night spent

a couple laughs so loudly
in the lobby

there is nothing
silence can’t magnify

particularly stillness
a pipe empties

from the loft above
even ears plugged

blood courses through
its vessels

September 19

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Al pastor with big hunks
of piña, a raucous song

coming from a band
of young drunks,

is it Roma, Condesa?
These streets run

around and around
like a race track.

Cerveza at altitude. Joven,
cinco más por favor,

con todo. What warmth
and light at this hour

of night. And absolutely
nothing at right

angles, walls coming out
like full bellies,

pavement in riot,
this city sinking down

into the prior.
Poco que sé.

You were a child here,
and so are more lovable here,

or, I love more here—
innocence is fearless,

if indefensible.
Every wall a canvas,

alebrijes line the streets,
bronze marigolds, a hundred

altars for the dead,
flies in the eyes

of sugar skulls, endless
limes, vats of jamaica water,

it whets an appetite,
new words, tlalpeño,

can I eat it?
I could even be happy here.

I could ride a bike to the Zocálo
sip tamarindo and never

ever learn how to say doubt.
Look at the size of this sky,

this city that floats
in a sea of itself, and tell me

over midnight tacos
what is and isn’t possible.

September 18

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Summer went out
like a light,

Rain now pools

on the roof, sounds
of passive movement,

the day cedes
more willingly.

Water splashes up
beneath a passing car, yes,

this city is more beautiful
when damp, saturated,

it carries more weight,
occupies more space.

Yes I booked the flights.
What hell to wait,

sometimes, to inhabit
every hour, each

a different room,

Some hearts come
more even-keeled,

don’t yearn
while floating

through a night.
The wind picks up,

rain falls in torrents.
There is an art

to distance,
but I can’t learn it.

September 17

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Rain, finally.
As if home

was returning
from battle–

the cold slick road
engulfed correctly

the familiar treachery
of a high mountain pass–

prodigal clouds
come back as if visitors.

Who knew this summer
could actually end?

A timely progression
of seasons, how strangely

normal. Still a headache
from yesterday’s smoke,

but seeing it, belief
and then such relief

despite white-knuckle
driving for hours after

September 15

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It’s not pretty math
one saddled with the remainder

one the larger denominator
one always wanting more

This crescent moon is a quarter
this night is one third over

this silence a tense zero
some bad egg that might hatch

September 12

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Woke up to End
of Days, the sun

an angry ember
in an asbestos sky,

the only thing
not on fire,

and still death
to breathe–

woke up to a burning
throat, eyes wet

but even that
moisture went–

woke up to a sunset
at dawn, a dead day,

smoke following us
as far as we could flee,

South, West, the sky
never got right–

that sick yellow hue
of a blister–

we kept all the windows
shut and it didn’t matter,

smoke got in,
permeated our clothes,

hung like a shroud
over unseen mountains,

the tinderbox trees,
the ashen disasters.

September 1

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Untethering in stages–
the front door closed

the train from work
mechanical issues

a gate change,
delayed, the salmon sky

turned black now,
it’s beginning

to feel late, but
when did I leave,

or have I left yet?
Also a gradient,

shades of leaving,
and arriving,

and still customs to clear
when we get there,

a man paces, a baby
sleeps likes a baby

in a collapsible stroller,
stasis, the man curses

under his breath, static
on the overhead,

another gate change,
exodus of disbelief

we flood into the concourse,
and still no plane, we are all nowhere

except manifestly,