The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

Poem for Monday and Building Museum Hive

Hotel Couplets
By Lisa Robertson

It was a clandestine winter of television;
We were so tired of the fashion blogs.

The moist world was doing what it could
To think at pinkish dusk.

I say this from the position of having already been emptied
That summer I heard the chora in the beergarden.

Vitality, monstrosity, sociability, anarchy—these are standing in for a kind of sensing that hasn’t happened yet.
There’s a slicing rain horizontally striping the train window.

If ornamentation can be austere
It’s a form of brutality.

I started asking questions about the sculptural values that sound has
And how authority is installed.

Describe the silence there. It’s a recording of silence
A marbling or breathing through

Of sentences coarse, heavy, and blistered
About things that weakened.

By 1650, with her outdated ruffs and loyalties, her pipes, her horses and her Roman histories
I was an overheard language. I lay down in it with my own nerves and blood.

Each has the pleasure of a new proportion.
It can’t be solved, only articulated.

Your wind, your clean sky, places, food, sleep
It all agrees brilliantly with the shape of the earth.

In this attic room with the deep blue carpet and skylight
Imagining these small actions from my chair fills me with an even calmer happiness.

I was the flexible medium of the future and the impossibility of beginning.
I was longing for the visible.

I wanted it to be real kissing, softer than god.
Thirty seconds of weightlessness as one’s inner life.

Oh breast-bone and guts
My heart’s all over my body.

Charis is the graciousness
The discretion outside effort.


We had planned to go on Sunday to the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire with Cheryl, but she had a death in the family, so we postponed that and instead went to the National Building Museum's Hive exhibit since this is the last weekend for it. Hive was built by the Studio Gang out of nearly 3000 recyclable paper tubes, silver on the outside and hot pink on the inside, which interlock like Crystal Climbers to make beehive-looking structures with wind chimes and percussion instruments, plus there are build-your-own cardboard pieces and round benches to sit and stand on:









We also went to see the museum's Wright on the Walls (color your own Frank Lloyd Wright masterpiece), the paper models, and Timber City, an exhibit on the wonders of modern sustainable forestry and wooden building construction sponsored in part by -- who else -- several lumber companies. Then we drove to College Park, picked up Adam, and took him to dinner at Rasoi where we had fabulous Indian food before we gave him the new luggage we got him to take to his Microsoft internship interview in Seattle next weekend. We came home, watched Endeavour, then sat through the end of the unfortunate Red Sox game.

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