Peter Milne Greiner


AGNES MARTIN’S DRAGON

Call the end an end but we never can

precisely All

that human touch is all

too real now Avoidances, storm

clouds gather their intentions

and compulsions and compulse and reason

and ungather Steady seismographs

measure inexorable stresses

Iron Ages spread

across the lost hemispheres

I walk the gardens in search of ritual

Instead I find the cure for the ingredients

of public domain

There is no public

but the ingredients

are the domain

Unrandomly the waves

send their events

through the food chain

Logic lodges its sign

in my obediences

and the sign remains

there like a hieroglyph It resists entering

the courtyard mosaic

The sign drifts

through limestone, through citied cliffs,

through my millennia-feeling minutes

Medicines, mesas

Cottage bedding

Fossil that records the subtle traumas of speciation

Sunlight off the sea fades the wallpaper

I circle down slowly through a layer of vapor

to the city, to the dormant volcanoes,

to the ruins

of cities that face the ocean and refuse

to speak

Pain relief is painful

Escape, agony

Paradises offer up their fruit but I hate fruit

I leave the Earth-half of horizon as blank as it must be

to satisfy everyone All that is human touches the other

magnetic Poles

out there

Frozen beaches, gales,

desolation murmuring its antilogies to endangered animals et cetera

The grains of sand in those beaches number

in the thousands, thousands

There are more grains of sand in those

bleak beaches than minutes I have spent

in desperation searching for a way to get

back to them,

but not much more, not for much longer

Because I’m starting to get it

They’re escape routes

Stationary stationary

I can hide everything I’ve done and said there

as words, but not words like these

This desert is unprotectable

Projectile is a type of weapon

Gyres are a type of guidance

Birds of a desert mock me forever

My illusions lecture me about how real

they are and I listen to be fair and professional about it

When I was a stoner I dreamt of long red bricks

They weren’t bricks

They were places in the floor

Small places

where you could fall through if you were microscopic Stuff like that

is all it takes to put fear in me fleetingly

Barely, here is my substance

Barely, here is my data

Barely, here is totality’s defeat of spectroscopy

Sad walls Built by aliens A touch-all

I built these buffers, these buffers that

crisscross my empire like aqueducts I planned the sacred

cities myself, I planned their

sacred platforms, their centers and excavations,

their lairs and their hoards,

but my plans were not approved

When I was a roofer I dreamt of diverted sheets of rain

We’re not here and there’s nothing there except a vault

and if that’s a vault this is a strange tomb amongst many

rupturing in the Earth like an appendix and if that’s a vault

this is a pond and this is a pool with a degree of abandonment

JG Ballard could be proud of

It is so huge

It is so immaculate

I look down at the immaculate floor and up at the ceiling

and that’s my own special domestication of special relativity,

my own special eyrie from which I generalize fear

Pyramid Plant, Cathedral Plant, Macreduct

I would call the perfectly good explanations flawed

Aliens, too, infrastruct my vanity, my famous plumbing,

the sleeves I keep my records in

“Place is completed through the word,” Marc Augé reckons

Fancy words for division

Rupture Fault Chiasmus

protrude from the body

like cribbage pegs

There

is something unknown

about the difference between things in general

What is it I wonder dismissively

Runner-up flag designs for my other

country, the archipelago

The canali run through it there, too

Stripes

Quadrants of sovereignty

Outward to something like aether,

like ocean that accepts them with

questions, allegories, tell tale signs,

fabulous reluctance

Every pyramid has a capstone that

makes the enemy your name

**

PETER MILNE GREINER is a poet and science fiction writer. His work has appeared in Fence, Motherboard, Dark Mountain, glitterMOB, and elsewhere. His first full length collection, Lost City Hydrothermal Field, will be published later this year by The Operating System.

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