from E C H O [ E S ]

A:   I don’t understand what you’re trying to prove.

Z:   That I have – nothing – to prove.

 

A:   This path is shadow.

Z:   Yes, this I know

 

 

Z:

Your silence frightens me.

I search but cannot find

any travel signs to navigate

your plentitude—only yield

and stop.

 

Your House

has been lightless—

and I worry about you.

 

Yesterday I threw green

pebbles at your bedroom

window—to no avail.

 

Did you find

the cathedral bells and

Japanese plum peonies

I left at the garden door?

 

 

A:

Yes, darling. The inchworm

green bells and one hundred

plum petals found me.

Buoyed me, in fact.

I have been sleeping

by the fire too many hours—

and wake with coldness

etched into every bone

and frayed nerve.

 

I am studying

the movement of

dragon-orange

blazing flames—

and throw pages

[from defunct diaries

I want no one to read,

even me] to feed it—

 

before sleep’s goddesses

pull me under the darkness

when I wake without

you.

 

Can you read these loops

of my delipidated

cursive—that even I

don’t recognize?

 

Pardon my silence,

darling. There is much

to attempt to comprehend

that eludes me—jumpy

sparrows—that will not

still.

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