LET THE COFFEE DO ITS WORK

Untitled, dated “4/28/15”

let the coffee do its work

blood and the simple placing

of bodies into clothing, that

this or that is a scourge or

what-have-you:

we might liken this

to the frustration

of having approximation

as one’s goal, or only

possibility:

approximate enough of what

can only be approximated and

someday we’ll have filled out

the universe.

having deployed this faculty

I might then see where I

stand, but does it matter?

Its after-the-factness can’t

change what is/ what must

always be, can it?

Besides the problem of the other

we have this: that for this

act there is a suitable object

 

spaces to be filled

that hold what you fill it with

that you’re filling in the first place

 

let the coffee do its work

next to the question of a

necessary aloneness, that

of doing something like

thinking in a

speaking in a

language that is

as-of-yet non-interfaceable

with those of what’s come

to be the world

 

but that is precisely the point

that coffee does its work

that this deployment is

from and out onto materiality

 

that there are breasts slung

in brassieres, confused and

disappointed pensises caught up

in worn undergarments

buttholes and things painted

white for the shininess

lines of cops against crowds

of anger, hot like coffee

in its pot

 

my desire goes nowhere today

is not known by its frustration

nor its piqued interest

only I remember small wounds

that I can’t remember how they happened

the seeming nature of inconsequentiality

that poetry is also like a lab report

considering its own forwardness,, tied

to my own deployment out and into a

world

 

a world that meets me gently today

up to and against my knowledge of it

as concrete, cold, violence; instead no

it’s cool. A pale East Bay light seems

to pull its hardness back into something

like a dream

 

a police officer writing poetry

with his baton

in Arabic on my body, gently

 

poetry that I now must translate

 

into a world of languages

with too many right angles

 

too abrupt to ever allow

for the possibility that a cop

might make anything beautiful

with his baton, of my ribs

 

there is no analog

in the world

for the names of the dead

 

no color to fill the space

between possible meanings and

things that were meant

 

those who are both visible

and unseen are yet registerable

by bullets of all sorts

touchable

 

and hope works for many

that they might be forgotten

 

hope works against us

when our language is anger

 

when the streets of Baltimore

throb for the blood and glass

of those who would blot them out

 

the page longing to be filled

with a new language, heretofore

unreadable, now articulated

in all the cries against the

police, and the president,

and the state

 

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