Three Poems by Jeremy Rodriguez
When we are three or four
we find out about perspective and
depth; how the mug moves from
left to right with one eye shuttered.
We rub our eyes with our fists
and the heels of our hands and
conjure branching shapes in pink
and yellow and teal that fill
the hollows behind our lashes.
I haven't really moved on.
In the morning from 8:45
until the afternoon I sit with my
shoulders forward, forearms tensing
full lips, stirring;
these shivering outlines of squares
dropped out of sight like rain
or loose clothing down the chute
to be cleaned,
crackling with absence,
senselessly congregating, like dust,
on the first floor of an empty house.
the Grand ontology of Difference
a guiding principal of distrust
and big disorder
buzzes lime green over
the corpse of a potbellied question mark,
bloated and reeking
someone on a subway car
packed moist and zip-sealed
catalogs his mistakes
carefully checking and rechecking
the count, the labeling, the red
flush of shame, the cool
bitter taste. his face
contracts, then, dilated:
a breathy laugh, like a cough
rustling leaves in a garbage bag
the sound of carapace on linoleum
bare feet and the unforlorn metal shavings of a Tuesday afternoon
Shuffling, past bitter revelations disguised as trivia,
the odd arabesque of woodgrain, grey-blue brickwork
shot through with wax and crimson,
two shoulders, two forearms. A losing bet
nestled nose to marrow like a bullet,
lodged near living bone in the wet packed, sub prime
chuck of a shoulder, taps out messages in code--
syncopation clicking and tonguing the hollow
about the bone in wet rhythm, while up above
a paunchy aching face,
dark circles under its single faded eye,
moves with bonegrey sleeplessness: a smear of afternoon,
And everywhere flashes, echoes, flakes of shrapnel
scattered, cruel, inert desiccated thorns,
ploughed earth crumbling around second hand stores.
Your wincing narrowed eyes
fix a form that slides and weaves, playing
among the gleaming hubcaps, dancing
like a razor blade against a cheek of waning moon,
a withering shadow on a reflected surface;
a lunatic pleading with her sun.
Some things, you can count on.
We are, as a rule, one simmering, endless longing.
Jeremy Rodriguez is a writer from Chicago, living in the Logan Square neighborhood. He is currently working on editing a film.
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