MAUREEN McHUGH

May 30, 2010

from Rotary

Say it is a wheel that divides & subtracts
                    and we are not smarter animals
 

Freshly, betwixt & in-between, The temple
                    struck with brutish force

 

Say sacred things               Burned things,
things pain-
                    less

 

Pale forearms likened
                    to snow on the mountains
 

Sweet thing the
                    clean world now absent of a predictable
violence               & The season says
 

If it doesn’t hurt
                                        then make it

 

                    Then let the light pour through you
like the only pure thing you know
 

& Death is the only thing worth believing in
 

If it is a wheel that can bring you back say
Guide say          Forgiveness say
Honeysuckle by the gate in Summer
 

                     The twist of the crystal door-
knob to the cool dark basement

 

Sliced circularly by your wants as though
                    you said Stay but meant Follow or Go
 

Done gravely here the lights likened to stars
                    or beads of water
 

Nights you close the door to keep the cold in:
 

Left with zero as in Divided & without longing
                    such as Due to the medication
 

or Important guests are paying a visit,
                    so wash your hands

.

.

.

                    As such
refuse advice               regarding loss
 

                    Name rivers
after lovers               Machines               after daughters
 

Here lies the whole-
world
The whole [damn] world,
 

The system               of forgetting
complex as          the way God intended it
 

The poisoned world
The [small,] elaborate world
 

World of moving parts
 

rovings
drawn through small spindles

 

                                        As such
take no advice regarding mechanical
efficiency
 

Regarding assumptions
                    that one will wait for you
 

Believe in
desire               without restrictions,
The first & last time we drove to the coast
 

How pollen               spreads across [water]
                    as the fingers spread
or bend back easily
 

That the finger-nails should be trimmed
                    to appear trustworthy
& stable
 

To improve the process throw
the telephone against the wall
 

                                        rip [the]
wires from their proper housings

.

.

.
Maureen McHugh currently lives & writes in Tucson, Arizona. She has previously received an 1885 Fellowship, a Pushcart Prize nomination, and was the 2009 Prague Summer Seminar Fellowship winner. You can read some of her other work in Third Coast & Web Conjunctions.

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