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Wednesday, January 31, 2007

This I Believe

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I want to remember:


the metal shapes at the art museum, glued to the wall
making a slow, languid arc,
the way we talked about language
and you stood next to me. The sleeve of your jacket
touched mine (for a second, so I believe)


My poetry teacher says
the first word of a line should be the most
important


but if that were so all these verses would consist
of your name


(your name has a density, a smoothness)


I refused to eat lunch because you were paying.
This is what I will remember: your shirt
soaked with water and sweat,
translucent, your skin
and the contrast I want so desperately,
your skin
hot and making my palms sweat and melt


your shoulderblade rounding out
to fill the curve of my hand
and the way you went white like notebooks.


This is what I remember.
At lunch my salad dressing was sour.
You sat across from me.
I piece you together like this
because I don’t know any better way


to tell you about the metal alphabet,
and even if you said the heart
was only a construct of my imagination


I believe somewhere in you is constructed
something I cannot begin to imagine
(somewhere in you
a heart has learned a new way
to beat.)

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Old Comments

  • Wow.  This so reminds me of a time I was in love and went to (the) Art Gallery (who IS Art Gallery, anyway?).  The guy I was in love with wasn’t there, but I thought about him in spite of that.  I wished for him, and that we could go for lunch. 

    The main exhibition was a bunch of giant paintings done all in black.  They had different kinds of brush strokes, and that was the only difference between them that there could possibly be.  I looked at them all, bemused, and then wrote to my beloved about the whole thing, later. I was studying philosophy at the time.

    Cool poem!  It’s, uh, evocative.  I haven’t thought about that experience for ages. 

    J.

    Posted by julianyway  on  02/01  at  03:26 AM
  • i totally dig this, too.

    if i’d change anything, i’d play with the (so i believe) part of line 6, and maybe just scratch out the first line.  i don’t think you need the first line, as it is a little sentimental for me, and the rest of the poem is so direct and powerful in its imagery.

    Posted by mmpottlehill  on  02/03  at  12:19 AM
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