Sunday, June 1, 2008

Arlene Ang


She appears

And nothing. The night sky contracts.
I remember adagio because porchlight is perishable.
I remember the submerged palace in her gestures.
The blur deliberate on this lifeline.
Cirrocumulus and ammonia: her favorite trompe l'oeil.
She is drunk on loneliness, precaution.
In a series of optical illusions, the chair is C├ęzanne.
Static: radio noise from the shipwreck.
I do not ask for paper clips. Or sawdust.
I can lie about what resembles August 16.
This pain is, in part, unfurnished.
She shakes her breasts at trees using both hands.
The sea spray, the alloy, the off-days, the gurney.
I show her the ladder. This last rung.


(fear) of rabbits

it
drifts : and
the sky loses
a contact lens : rabbits panting
as they park themselves on the porch :
the man richard climbs a ladder :
he is recycling his entrails for the christmas decor : from
afar trees appear with octopus suits : the situation is so
that it requires a wife for the interior design : hands
typing an experiment on animals : the old remington with
its missing keys : tic-tac-toe of anxiety of vertigo
of the man richard on the roof : sun
so shrill it makes
the ground
ache


Inventory of Goodbye

The unexplained occasion on this card,
a kidney-shaped basin, something urine.
One morning and the pocket was searched.
Four wall clocks four minutes late,
four walls, four strips of wallpaper playing dead.
Linoleum blue. What is the stone age
if not 28? Tap once for the area code,
tap twice for ice water, iced tea, ice in general.
The vestibule opens a black umbrella
for missing children, the baroque
architecture of pain. Creepers zip the windows shut.
And indoors, under the x-ray lamp,
I feel the hand on the planchette move
across my breasts. Back and forth. Syntax error.


Osmosis

One thing we can always depend on, said Miss D, is the egg.
It takes a mosquito thirty minutes to drown because of a
defective stopwatch. Underwater, its reality is magnified.
Even before we weighed the egg's mass on the fourth day,
we already knew the answer from books. We mismanaged
the measurements and lied in the final report. When you
pull a feather halfway out of a pillow, there's no pushing it
back in. We experimented on this based on the concept that
as the egg changes, it also changes those who witness the
change. Miss D, according to the substitute teacher, won't be
coming to class today. A majority of accidents happen in the
bathroom. No one explained how experiments, like solitude,
could go wrong. Only later did we find out that, if left too
long underwater, it is in the nature of eggs to come apart.


Laptop

Opaque black, charcoal gray
keyboard: it opens like a 12-gauge steel
coffin lid. Sunday morning in bed

lacks the odor of coffee since
he left. Here are definitions of emptiness:
a room without discarded shoes,

milk crust in unwashed cups,
& hung brassieres on the dresser mirror.
Outside---cathedral blue sky,
clouds like snipped feathers,
cats on the roof, hypothermic evergreens.
Today: a game of solitaire
I rarely win, plus the words mutant,
frostbite and shrimp that have no place
in Apollinaire's secret love poems.

2 comments:

Pris said...

Another wonderful selection of poems! Arlene is such a gifted poet. Glad to see more of her work here.

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