The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review
littlereview

Poem for Tuesday and Brookside Wildlife


August
By Peter Cole

   Homage to Morton Feldman
   "Before the oracle, with the flowers"
   —1 Kings 7:49

1

Here in the gloaming,
a wormwood haze — 
the "m" on its head,
a "w," amazed
at what the
drink itself does:

Vermouth,
god bless you — th.


2

What really matters now is begonia,
he thought, distracted while reading — 
their amber anther and bone-white petals
missing from a jade pot
by the door — not a theory of metaphor.


3

In this corner, sweet alyssum.
And beside it fragrant jessamine.

Almost rhyming scents in the air — 
a syntax weaving their there, there.


4

Erodium holds
an eye in the pink
looping the white of
its tendering cup.


5

The blue moon opens all
      too quickly and floats
      its head-
                     y fragrance over
                               the path
                  before us:

And so we slit
its throat, like a florist.


6

These hearts-on-strings
    of the tenderest green
things that rise
from dirt,
then fall
                  toward the floor,
                                  hang
                            in
               the air
         like — 

             hearts-
on-strings of the tenderest
green things — 
    they rise from dirt
then fall toward
          the floor,
    hanging in
                the air like — 

                                 these
hearts-on-strings of the
tenderest green things,
                                       rising
from dirt then falling
toward the floor,
             hanging
      in the air like


7

Moss-rose, purslane, portulaca
          petals feeling
    for the sun's
light or is it
only warmth
or both

    (they need
to open)

an amethyst
          almost
see-through
shift


8

Bou-
          gainvillea
lifts the sinking
spirit back
          up and nearly
into a buoyancy — 
      its papery
pink bracts
proving with
their tease
    of a rustle and glow
through the window — 

there is a breeze.


9

Epistle-like chicory
blue beyond
the bars of these
    beds suspended
                  in air,
(what doesn't dangle?)
elsewhere, gives
way to plugged in,
pez-
             purply thyme,
against a golden
(halo's) thistle.


10

What's a wandering
Jew to you
two, who often do
wonder about
that moving about?
Its purple stalk
torn-off and stuck
elsewhere in
the ground takes root
and soon shoots
forth a bluish
star with powder
on its pistil.
Such is the power
of that Jew,
wherever it goes
(unlike the rose),
to make itself new.

--------

Monday was as beautiful a day as we had over the weekend. My college roommate Tracey, whom I saw last week when she was headed down to the Outer Banks, was coming through again heading back home, and we went out for bagels on her way north, which was lovely. Then I went out to the mall to look for some gifts, mostly unsuccessfully, and took a walk, which is a delight in this uncharacteristically cool August weather.

Paul and I had to drop the car off for routine stuff, so we did that after dinner, then watched the rest of the fifth season of Arrested Development, which did not give me the Gob/Tony love scene we all deserve but did give me Cobie Smulders, although most of the women are vilified unfairly compared to the men and no one in her world properly appreciates Maeby. Here's the creatures of the woods last weekend:

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