The fat lands are smooth and leafy.
The houses there are shelled in delicate plasters.
Stippled pink of granite countertops. Hands flutter
like stop-motion animals.
The night filters outside
from my brow, my bones.
The ache in my jaw
the liposuction of my eyeballs.
The various other tortures I’ve been promised.
These are rendered graphically
in the decay of a brick wall,
or the pattern of stains on a quilt.
The passage of time here
is like the collecting of skeptical fates.
In my face, in your face,
I see a blooming of sleep.
All of us awake, half-awake.
Shivering in February.
Look at the facts
as they are represented
in crumpled bedsheets
lozenges of dog hair and house dust
systems for storing memories.
Of these things, I stand clear
but perturbed. I graze beside them.
A stranger is arranging the clues
to our investigation;
on my tombstone is written: I hope I do.