Laura Wetherington

We can be absolutely sure that death is born of something else
after Michelle Grangaud

For example, following a c, I am less hard.
Gravity represents p with a paper cup.

To locomote is to dig a chain.
Every letter corresponds to some place in time.

Each tongue makes a different movement.
On the train we are always looking out the window.

Against the glass we impress ourselves.
Outside we see smoke rising from rooftops.

The long window cuts the horizon.
We cut the gray with our blinking.

We fear immobile.
We transpose our sighs into sight.

We impose our imaginations on some place in time.
Every number writes a letter.

We're wrestling with local phenomena.
Smoke rises like laughter we laugh at every character.

We count by letters, by hands, by lands.
Our hands are animal.

Certain objects lose their sense once they are fixed.
Every time is different: we are each a different number.

We didn't design this or that object, we just continue to pursue it.
We can see into it.

We said we were civil. We said we were born and married and do not die,
but remembrance is the aunt of paper.

Starting line
after Christophe Tarkos

For one half of our race,
closed legs mean something.
You have to adhere to the intersection of closures to be closed.
For business, I mean.

For a long time I held this idea around me.
I kissed the air.
I read somewhere once that we are emptied because we are empty inside.
Someone tries to enter us
and they meet the outside
I mean inside us it's like the outdoors—
all fresh and open and full of air.

In certain company playing with space paints us into a certain role.
It's our idea of the thing.
The more I live, the more I descend into the canvas.
The more my pronoun is feminine.
Female doesn't exist before it's formed.
I'm always holding on to time like it's a wineglass.

Worm holes
after Jean-Marie Gleize

I address myself to the parts of you which are not
(because then you can not reprimand me.)
All of the deafness (silence) holds me together.
You say, “I am the body of a woman.” And you show me
(it figures) your parts.
We all disappear under the pressure of vibration.
There are holes inside your holes.

You're right to think something's wrong. I really shouldn't be
judging people, or shouldn't be
looking them in the eye. I can't stop thinking
we're all strangers. Even with all the same holes
we don't understand unified feeling.

You have good reason to think something's wrong with me.
Something might be. But no reason to Google my symptoms.
I'm waiting for you to appear stranger.
When you breathe, you appear to be the subject itself.

With all of what's possible, you're not missing anything.

The danger with mountains
after Jules Supervielle

Under a sky as big as the Andes
we turn in blind confusion.

Every mansion in the world
has more than one balcony
and a human loneliness without bottom.

All at once the night is daytime.
Out over the ocean our dirty hair
lofts into our dirty mouths.
From a small cut on your hand
you feel vapor entering your skin.
This salt fire makes dry hair
a violent poison that
we undress.

Terror is not as old as it is blind—
the vortex takes night in toward day.

There is a huge sky.
It never ends. It moves
around and around us.
No more mountains, only
this small balcony.

Suffice to clap the world into a quiet costume
that resumes its place on the surface.
In the place of a sea, city streets.

We won't last longer than the
mansions which make a silent round
from the flat sky.

With a picture book we can imagine a past or a future without saying anything
after Jean-Marie Gleize

Dear disingenuity, Dear track shorts, Dear thunder (we are crossing the street now), Dear thing I can do to you,

I am forgetful.
You make me a shoe.
                               I throw myself at you.
                               I am a you and you are a you (we are each a prison.)
                               There is no way to cure these feats. No impossible way.

Dear insolence, Dear manager, Dear liturgy, Dear technological advances in scanning software (speed,) Dear movie montage, Dear promises,

I am lonesome.
                               I discover without digging or architecture
                               that your other foot is a club.
                               I dream inside of you
                               like a field of prairie dogs diving home at once.

Dear hanger, Dear dog, Dear dancing in the streets (we start with a “b,” don't we?), Young deer, Young coupling, Dear Youngstown, Dear fragile Ohio, freaking rat fuck Midwest ghost boy and puppy, Dear hat, Dear choices we make,

The probability of math is a positive one.
                               Men's heads run our lives.
                               What I most think about is the math of we may not make it.
                               It's not funny. How can I make it laugh?
                               I mean, when your shoes give up on you

Dear what a whisper sounds like in a vacuum, Dear Swedish fish, Dear shirt and shoes required, Dear get off the juice, Dear permanence,

The world is the world ground up inside
                               its insides. It's like pig intestines, but just the lining,
                               and stuffed with sausage. And outside is a light.

Leaving the realm of cylinders,
                               I hold down all feminine nouns by
                               their arms. I stuff my pig inside
                               their linings. I am a Great Pig.
                               I stare hard at the light. It
                               comes to me in waves.

Dear home sweet home, Dear oxygen tank, Dear boogers, Dear dandelion tea, Dear compassion, Dear pulsing center,

You can't put me in a pen. I
                               range the Great West. I ride the
                               night like a cowboy. I cake walk.
                               I small plastic toy.

Laura Wetherington's first book, A Map Predetermined and Chance (Fence Books 2011), was chosen by C.S. Giscombe for the National Poetry Series. She teaches creative writing in University of Michigan's New England Literature Program and co-edits textsound.org with Anna Vitale.
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