Veining and Rooting

Just back from an abridged version of the Wrangell Mountain Center’s Poetry Workshop with Dan-Beachy Quick.  Having left my workshop notebook along with a few pieces of my manic, in-the-word-world brain, I’m still trying to process the amazing time had in that off-the-chart place, McCarthy, and eagerly awaiting the arrival of my notebook in the mail this week.  Until then, I’ll have a dispatch from the workshop over at the 49 Writer’s Blog tomorrow and for now here’s a raw first take at one piece that came out of the week.

_________

strangeness requires attention
kept surpressed it will become systemic
force or work or work of force
pressing, weighing its presence with pressure,
posturing and
errupting eventually
taking form at surfaces
eyes, skin, earth

a peripheral wash of white spots
flashbulbs unilluminating
even as they intend to bring
into light that which
is more comfortable in dark

strangeness now systemic
blood-coursed through body, through earth
veining and rooting through dark
gathering strength
rising bloom, rash of pox

florettes growing feverish
blighting entire limbs
all that is green going copper
ungreening
burning without fire or fall
bodies alive but branded

eyes of the unstrange
look closer
wonder at those of us
reddening
with rash, with rust
‘could this have been prevented?’

it begins as a theory
passed, whispered
within licked glue sealed paperfolds
is the strangeness so endemic
to take measures of this kind?
unkind, far from kind

our own kind
but rashing, rusting
driven toward a manic form
of measurement
of ‘circumference, song, love’
only to blur the edges

seeing and unseeing
trapping and letting go
what new damages might this
write on their hearts?

theories untheoried
let’s bleed it out
do we begin with the trees,
which is worse
the rust
or the rash?

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