for the with and hide the when, this is a floating point, a moving vision, a catastrophic reminiscence
the pre-reflective ‘i’ submits
quiet time and silent mind
to a yawn altogether deeper
than this thought.
free-falling the hesitant
deep between self-inquiry
and speechless dreamy
content to kindle
of immobility. hush
shirking the pangs
of receding light he withdrew
from sight, sunk in a
sadness before electricity.
so dark nods came wet with tears,
ragged breath dividing faint
into cold. for one
last look at regret. eyes misting,
scene fading, smile melting
into the very beginning–
desire smother the last
the artist’s duty is to be responsive, not responsible.
usually i am too nervous to be pure,
pure means keeping clear;
and not mouthing off
a calendar month
of emotion guests.
feeling for no one’s sake,
feeling the absence renew my breath
letting emptiness work
and take its time unknotting
every little stricture
i never meant well.
i’m writing outside of time, in time, for no time, no reason, no sense, no matter, it’s a fact; that much is sure.
i don’t know what to say or how to say it, or even if i’m here. i have no way of ascertaining any of these things. i am dying, i say that between coughs, between barely mutters, between glances stolen at the bed and at the charge i cannot but blink out of view.
did you ever notice… the most magical things about life simply aren’t there; that’s how perfect we are, that we contrive to invent them, we who ourselves are mere ideas. stories trembling in so many mouths, ineffable but unfinishable.
myself; i was never any less than my own dream, of a dreaming that was an abuse promise with a work problem and phantom limp; climbing the sisyphean staircase from now until now then on oh, keeping time by counting breaths as if tracking steps. from point A to point C but vanishing in between.
and passing out at the top, into blackouts of indeterminate length where i surveyed that vast, extraordinary dark continent and returned unable to report on what i saw.
i quit writing surrendering
to proof i was once alive
that was enough for action
enough for what was due
enough enough to carry on
forsaken certainty, suffering
everywhere i go,
like a trail.
these are just words
my message is nothing more
our presence is the handiwork frangible
proof-read by an isolated collective
of ghosts which is every
anonymous, unspoken impulse
hold your books up to pronounce the stars
so they can see what fugitive strokes have wrought
rummaging through sounds of emotion, the scent of the discarded
the calculated revel of their cool regard.
hysteria is telling. today happened. leave it alone.
foment calm like windblown silence linger long
as the smoke dissipates he lives slow, muttering the lightheaded other;
those who do will not remain, those who have will not give.
between breaths he doesn’t prey on what she’s thinking,
between words she doesn’t impose on what he’s saying.
blind-date with unspeakable reality.
woman whisper smaller bed…
exit wanton miss.
for those who can will never go,
don’t understand mean don’t misunderstand.
i’ve got what you want.
i absent there myself, sorry i no speak,
sleep and still.
will understand why you no come? please go,
no go. please no i understand i, please no
for with and why
for whom it may concern
and if it all shall will, from beginning to said end.
distill the sounds from the silence,
enter the sounds; quiet the sounds,
learn of the sounds, live with the sounds;
into silence we all go, wailing
on our way in, whimpering
on our way out.
Elizabeth Victoria Aldrich writes fiction, poetry, and bad HTML in Los Angeles, CA. She obsessively tweets at @eris_rlt
*Image credit: Still from Charles Laughton’s 1955 film ‘The Night of the Hunter’