The Opening

It is as if i live alone
and speak in silence to my self

my self in rain,
caused by rain, from where i am,
the mud of ages here
which i must walk, whose thoughts
my shoes go through,
as though boards planing the damp
of thick history, ambivalency,
and the wonder always
of slipping confused

But we miss, don’t we miss,
what fails to separate us
from the dark
whose plant rises like a twisted spine
toward moon,
and on air so humid glides
in irreal, irrational swerve toward
nothing but more space
and the indefatiguable breath of


night, the native,
more alive in its inscrutable passion
than i,

and so what is my aloneness
when dreams like this furl
around darkness, away from my silly eyes,
and fill themselves with crashings, sparkings,
where the starlights meet their
destiny and stretch it, out and up,
just exactly as it ought to be,

and exactly saying as in quiet
what it is


© J. Celan Smith