Sunday, March 5, 2017

Clayton Eshleman, Two Poems


bereft of floral guides in grey clear sky
invoke Pollock’s Aurignacian wall floor drip meanders,
for example, the 1950 #32:

embrangled masses of boughs & twigs,
angular auto-da-fes, sky voltage without pattern,
farrago of the subconscious mind
crossing wicker-tenuous consciousness

The day seems windless, yet the branches quaver, listless,
phantomatic Laocoon folds,
no leaves to evoke a concealed a green man--

might there be a black diviner
configured by these angular coils,
conducting, against cold obstruction.
a skeletal Giverny Mass?

Gnarl embroidery, static maelstrom,
what dying calls its own facing death…

The inalienable otherness of each, human & non-human.

The silence, the time-warped abidance
rising above these back yards…
          9 January—28 February, 2017

Walking on the gym track this morning,
I became fixated on one calf of the man walking in front of me,
he had on anklets and shorts, very long, narrow and bony white legs. 
As I followed this guy around the track I could see in this calf
something under the skin moving up and down.
As I thought of worms, I noticed streaks of little pulses.
Then, as if a gift to my attention, the calf opened to a mass of worms
writhing amid moving gears, some being cut up, 
others moving through the gears.    I thought of Chaplin
and as I did, there was a whirr, many of the worms were spit out
in a disappearing mass, at which point voices in my head
fired questions like:

Can’t you hear the angels vomiting? Don’t you see their hunched,
   shuddering backs?
14 July 2011—28 February 2017

—Clayton Eshleman