Six-hundredths of an inch last night
and here one must borrow
less than the thickness of paper
to write the rain
. . .
Mist on the seed-coat startles
. . .
Guardian of the spring
(sternere to spread out)
. . .
(The thinnest gestures
Vase of Red Tulips
Because of the inside spin being maytag—
dirty sky, color of labcoat
eroded bank, bruise of a river
I never looked this way at you
Tulips, don’t deny you’re hungry—
Stiletto grommet worn like a mouth
make this dress rodeo
No don’t be sylvia
tulips can’t afford to catwalk—
Shoeing for a run past the velvet stamens
never have the coyotes looked so
newspaper blood sniffing my argument
peeling the wearable from flame—
Burning it themselves the tulips whisper
Planet Pulled toward Something Moon-Like
A 3 am country can’t find a word it’s misplaced—
like a windfall forest, nothing but detour
and look it up, these neurons
supplicate as in a mirror shaking down onlookers.
Still anything scrutinized is altering
like electrons or games of scale—
if the sun’s the size of a quarter
then Earth is maybe a tic in the president’s—
Aw go inside, the dark told me, everything asking,
even the dark because it too has a wedding planner
fretting sprays of stargazers with pale roses smelled
miles off in the oddest ceremonies.
Dreaming? Must be a plug-in
vehicle. A moon-tide corrective to jammed
effulgence while luminous comprehension anthems surge
as in water pulled toward something moon-like—
but with more adverbs. The word was occlusion
and for clarity I searched the Alchemy & Mysticism pamphlet,
you know celestial orb singing—
we do love the small bones of this world
Mary Cisper is a long-time resident of New Mexico recently transplanted to the West Coast where she is pursuing an MFA in poetry at Saint Mary’s College of California. Her work has recently appeared in Lana Turner, Field, Water-Stone Review, and Fourteen Hills, among other places.