Three Poems
by Tim Earley

Glomming Poem

I really have no feeling about this wind
in relation to other winds though the rumors
of its madness-making properties are impressive
and beyond a commoner's reproach as a commoner
must retain a requisitely high amount of superstition
to get through the day.

How immaculately ordered the pine-droppings
seemed in the face of your latest
grief-borne illness.

My lover is a small lion crying into her cereal.

Details persist.
The weather listens to me
and the neighbors are the nearest channels
to other kinds of knowing but I cannot come near them
because the slopes of their skulls do not speak.

Grandmother preached the virtues of a democratic phrenology.

To quaff is the central command of the swindler's nervous system.

You made the best decision by not trading
the toy for the tail. You, swift darkling, my latest opine.

You could probably find
a more amenable trade in a warmer clime--
humidity breeds commerce and speeds
the world forth into its everyday froth.

If I had only stuck to it. If I had only
worn a more courageous color
of bathing trunks I would have
glimpsed the oriole.

The room is tiny. Our hearts are tiny.
We rummy up the day with laughter.
We spend our spoons on making sleep.

My mouth is agape, my eyes wet maws
at the precision of the party's best joke.

My lover is a grown-up or a made-up.

Keep moving, O confluences of occurrences.

Render anatomies under an optimal sun.

Forgive the dead their rapid embrace
of aphasia.

Good Poem

In the hominid the homily homogenized or hermeneuted a pneumatic or nail.
The chicken or duck ate a cross or crinkle. To die or live is better than to
which or what. Canvassing, spelunking or sporting, cavorting or dunking the
slish/slash borne up a new day entire or entirely. See the man. He is
spokey. Spokey in his bones. What brash perpipatetic purloins the gesture
of mischief or mistake. The loam gets loamy; we are all so familiar with
loam. Johnny carries a little jar of loam around his neck. Johnny is homey
or homuncular or as loamy as interstitial wine. To whine. Turn spark
refracted dark. Or to delineate. Say witty and disenchanted things about
amnesia or antabuse. Remember in the following order: the flare, the body,
the bodice, the fair, the oracularization of fish, the sound like a dish or
dish rag. It is all very good or bad. My private whigs are natty and
natural. I remember a lark and a glade. I remember you, tormentor-father,
when I remember tenderness or terns along the ocean's complicated border.

Hello, Grace, This Is How You Feel

You feel it is important how you feel
For instance you can’t just put an orange in your pants and forget about it
There is not enough music in the world to cover up that sound
You feel we remind you of actors from a certain era
The way they danced on graves with fistfuls of dollars
It is all about commerce & eschatology there is no other way
You feel like sneezing, you feel like a big pomegranate
Isn’t this, our world, a visual feast?
Isn’t this thing, often called vision, the province
Of mourners but mostly confused with any kind of seeing
Such as the seeing of a dog and thinking isn’t that one hair
That sticks up isn’t that an intricate hair isn’t that a hair going places?
Doesn’t going places queer the day with uncanny magic
The store, the beach, the dark place in your neighbor’s pocket?
The besmirched launderers and their tales of another sadness
Stand by, like they have the secret, like they are embossing
Bark and raindrop with redemptive sheen
You feel they are full of things
You feel tired of being sensual and smart,
And wonder when the Potato Days will arrive
And dust you good with agape,
You feel you do not fear the Potato King
You feel mostly upright on your cowboy ranch of love/franchise of death
You are feeling that this is what it must feel like
To be an American or a European
You are feeling my jugular is cute
You want to make it into something else
You chafe at what physics disallows in certain rooms
You feel nimbuses to the left of you
And sandwiches to the right, you feel it is a funny place to be standing
In a towel in a misery of hammocks it is your job to lie down
And make the grass believe, but how the hell
Did you get such a job, why don’t they pay you for it
And doesn’t the grass have an intransigent belief system
Based on some drowsy rhetorical swoon, anyway
You feel like la, la, la one minute, and shit! shit!, shit! the next
You feel the Pope is a wolf, you feel pretty singing
You feel like not singing to the Pope on any Tuesday
Many people stand in a room and you feel like giving them
windows for looking and cheeses for eating
You feel like giving them distinct characteristics:
Cleft palette, dizzy mother, a firm reclining vagrancy that lights
Up women You feel like all the people are many ways at once
You feel like letting transfiguration out of its happy box
You do not feel like giving it wings until the people’s middle-parts
Begin to rhyme

Tim Earley's poems have appeared or will soon in Conduit, Chicago Review, Hotel Amerika, Typo, Forklift, Ohio, and jubilat, among other journals. His first book, Boondoggle, is forthcoming from Main Street Rag in 2005. He lives and teaches in Hickory, NC; he blogs at Flashcards for the Hermeneutically Aggressive (www.aggressiveflashcards.blogspot.com).