Full of GirlsA house where a tongue is masculine. He lived in it.Like a language, or a furrow.A shoulder.Things are quick when one another.A house where the fireplace is full of fur. He had arranged it with all his mothers that they were, and a river not far but the same.It was enough and always. There is something young about supposing, supposing and a car and a glass full of girls.A house where empty places are clean and the full places are borrowed and nothing blue. A wristwatch lying looped around a fountain pen and a dog irritated by the night. Things go in circles and there are addictions.In a tongue where a house is masculine, the word the dog says has to make the night upset. It was not a place to eat between the meals. The meals were copious and no one was to admit the hunger in between times or remember that food is not about certain times or certain feelings. Food is about itself and happens when the thought of it arises in the hands.
Eating is a restlessness of mind, to be sure.
Dogs preach this among their seldom. Evangels of the appetite to move. Eating is moving and drinking is having, why some are fat and some are drunk and ordinary people are ordinary all day long.
If you do not want to eat you must read. If you do not want to drink you must listen.
These are the answers. Paint the shutters of the house blue then. Paint the walls with delicate stenciling that reminds one of Indiana.
Some of what one does reminds one, some is fresh and some forgets. What one hopes is everything, and everything is too much to carry and too little to describe, so there it is, a wall with blue on it and a dog.
Ycy est pourtraict le vizage dhomme he was able to read though nothing in the painting made sense since he saw a field of wheat, a Doge saying farewell to his barge of state, a poet in his garret starving, a lawyer choking on a gobbet of pork. Or was it corn?
Of course the eye can know the difference but the dream was wheat. He saw a Studebaker smoking by the side of the road along some great corniche. He saw an apple exploding as the bullet passed through it. He saw an opera shuddering to its end in a small Central European opera house where a man in the front row of the second balcony just in front of him was slumped asleep or drunk or dead all through the desperate cabaletta of a one-time diva assoluta.
He saw a bishop purple as a plum. He saw a cross cast its shadow up against the lowering clouds beyond his lawn. He saw himself grovel before an unknown god whose face was that of a teenage girl and whose body was that of a vast pulsating bee-queen.
Swarms of diptera he saw whose hives were built differently, some on the base seven and the others on the base eight war with each other and common reality. He saw the colors break inside the rainbow and fall slithering down the arch and enter earth. He saw gold.
A jungle war.
Hexaploids meant to nourish us. A nurse a pratfall an accent mocked.
The candle kept remembering all night long which irritated the dog who didn't bite the cat that slept at the foot of the comforter quilt and the bed thickened towards morning with fearful sleep.
Waking in the taste of blood a VCR still spooling and the drowsy actors making up their lines.
Breakfast was a cloud. If a hammer were falling from heaven if bronze could fall nine days and nights and then on the morning of the tenth arrive on this all-enduring planet speaking an oriental language.
If not bronze a sailor would send a postcard whose wife would weep an hour. The car goes on depreciating as usual locked in the driveway while albino hamsters chitter in the neighbor's orangerie.
Suburban life really is all about what Heraclitus said, there is enough water in a muddy footprint to cleanse the world if water could make clean. There is enough fire in a casual remark to light the galaxy anew if fire still knew how to burn.
But first of all things was language, which some men took as water though women knew better and knew it by a different grain.
The badly decomposed panel still bore its images plain enough for him to read them (like any other language) but not to understand (like language too).
Stand-oil was made from walnuts and flax.
The empires of the steppes concelebrating a Christmas despite the brutal cold, a noun with nine cases besides the instrumental.
Deep as sex in all the common mind, the Pope stood at the altar in the center of the poem waiting for the Youth whose arms, already weary with the brazen lance head dripping some body's blood, lifted towards him to be blessed.
Thou art a messenger of Christ and don't forget it and all over southern Illinois the masonic temples flicked their floodlights on to bathe the gentle lawns around such absent mysteries.
The world is a singular compulsion. A pond and a heron watching it. Then a heron walking on a wall.
--- "After He Bought a Dog"
©1998 John Yau, Editor
(Four Walls/Eight Windows)