Second Law

Even as it’s done, it’s more undone with subtle, wayward backness:
    cells decompose
to cancer, or addiction leaves behind a small slug trail. Tomorrow, the
    stable needs
another hosing out. You can only maintain so much before it makes
    you ill.
 
Always rain cuts paint a little more or a nail comes loose—some
    shingle striding
to the gutter. Small things, as usual. & big things go unnoticed just as
    often.
What’s bound unbounds; what’s fixed unfixes.
 
Call it inertia, call it quanta, call it expanding dark—
                    an ordered naming of erosions or the best chronologies of
                        kings.
 
Even as the laundry pile grows, the shirts gradually give away their
    threads.
Even the animals: one hoof wants a flaring nail, so the farrier limps
    his way to kneel
the quarters—hammer in hand.
 
Veils cocooning, shells dissolved; voices ashed down an esophagus—
we follow one another into a rolling boil. Eggs ladled from a pot of
    wax—paraffin decorations,
tiny pins. The insurrectionist descends the marble stair free & clear of
    treachery, so all is easter.
 
To be so simple? Rathering clear expectation:
                    song not heard so much as hummed—so it can be ignored.
 
One life strung out from another, a morning din rung mescaline—
haze in the middle of your name. A tinnitus of moonlight or two
    shadows on a sheetless bed.
These windows & doors opened to the wolves we are & are becoming.
 
Keep it dormancy, decay—trees blasted leafless by the dwindling wind
    & rain
or a half-red rind resting sloshed white in the sun—a troop of ants
    away.
Behold this film falling from your eyes—what is it you think you see?
 
& what is isn’t quite the surge of spirit—this it is: familiar sounds,
                    parsed pitch ringing backward ringing forward in the dark.

Front page image by Jayme Frye.

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