Banned for Life from the Artists' Colony

Monday, July 5, 2010
You want to write. You want to write. 
Tonight a sharp breeze from the river  

or elsewhere. The trains run later  

than expected, column of low whistle parting
clouds, and this new place is on a flight path 

so the lights lope in triads above  

your kitchen window, blinking, bound
for coasts. Midnight, the usual sounds.

When he met you, he gathered you up  

in hug. Where from the folds of his
impossible pants—someone would vote  

him best dressed this week, a joke, you  

never could see his shoes, cuffs like moon
boots, waist held up with string, head  

shaven, alien—from where did he rise, 

springing weed, born through the pleats
of cotton duck to greet you?  Only later

the stories reach you. He can’t come back.  

He drank so much one night, he stole
a dozen saucers from the kitchen, spilled  

a pool within every rim,  

left them under the beds of women.  
When does your life stop being your life?   

The trains, the air—nothing’s a distraction.

He must have balanced the plates on each
arm, walking through moonlessness,  

white shirted and singing.
Thursday, July 1, 2010