Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Grace #2

A smoky gray evening fraught with long-billed curlews & a pergola awash in pink roses & a maroon Pontiac Bonneville marooned in Daly City all unstuck in time—a wall clock lemon yellow & cornflower blue & thistle pink its face scalloped & floral—a checkerboard linoleum floor in a theater lobby—a single instant that stands in for forever like a luna moth in a truck stop sodium lamp

A Pennsylvania interstate phosphorescent at 3:00 a.m. & strewn with cigarettes & impossible laughter & poetic voices & other suicidal gestures—a smoky gray evening fraught with a gray Dodge pick-up hauling a horse trailer down North Grays Creek Rd & the polyrhythms of hummingbird wings—& here comes another star & it’s just as you say the stars are shattered glass like a C major 7 chord that won’t stop ringing

A mild dissonance a cognitive dissonance a tiger lily a paperback copy of Alcools tipped over on a shelf a pack of Camel lights beside an Adirondack chair a Bloody Mary garnished with celery all unstuck in time—a willow tree fraught with sparrows & the limbs are guitar strings in smoky gray air you cannot touch—a statue of Nuestra SeƱora housed in a scrap metal shrine beside a pink rose—a single instant that stands in for forever

Jack Hayes
© 2010


  1. good lord, these words
    if i could only touch these words

  2. I love the instances of words - the colour repetitions and the reappearances of words. And then there are the actual images - the moth in the lamp; the rose in the scrap-metal shrine, the different winged creatures and trees and plants - all combining to paint the most vivid pictures.
    A favourite device of mine is the use of the prefix "un" - even when it creates a word that technically doesn't exist - actually, especially in that case.
    That phrase, "& here comes another star" is just brilliant. I wonder, do you use the symbol because it is akin to a treble clef?



  3. Hi Rene & Kat

    Rene: Thank you so much!

    Kat: The two stars image comes up at a few points in the book as I recall--there was something that appealed to me in the stars being together in the sky & yet actually separated by vast amounts of space & time. The phrase "unstuck in time" was shamelessly lifted from "Slaughterhouse Five"--it simply fit one of the book's major themes too well to ignore.

    Thanks so much!