poem

Signals

When a magician dies
they break his wand.

Many guitar-songs close
with a strum.

While you wait for an old chord or seal
you attend the gospel of sitcoms,
unscramble the wallpaper’s
green curling leaves.

Light torn from a glass
waltzes and strays from the room.

Thank you, you say alone,
so many signals to choose from.

*

Things do come back: dry-cleaning,
arthritis in your great-aunt’s joints,
a borrowed book, your darker roots,
the half-moon, your calm way

of looking out a bus window
for six hours straight,
hands pressed in your lap
like collapsed white stars.
Your reflection cast on the flat-burlap land
as certain faces loom in the minds and moors
of Victorian heroines, and the faces

that once figured large
in your own,
where are they?

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