THE OXYGEN RED ARITHMETIC
Of the confessional
and the exacting standards of the opium addict
there comes to the oxygen red arithmetic
that solves itself into the first sound
both empire of its mutated echo
and strobing paradox of its prior condition.
A mountain is a longer thought.
Our world of exalted garbage
is the jewelsmoke from the future thurible
and the in-puncture of instance
of which time is the remainder.
The monolith eternities collapse to and stand from
the glass whale in the mantric sub-silence
bursting form to cohere in the everloss
of the feral rings of necropolitan archwork,
anemone of sunflower, eye of scales,
even the branch is a chameleon.
THE INFINITE AFTERNOON
The outdoor pingpong table is an avocado moonscape.
The white ants disappear into the gradient flows of guano.
Our stomachs bark like dogs in the hot glare of red spectrum megaflora.
We writhe in snake oil and baby oil and baby black scorpions are in the sleeping memory,
halobacteria making a scorchwork of the mahogany empire chair.
The yellow beaks become mottled bananas in the hot spray of animal magnetism.
We are sore vexed among the lacquer seedlings.
We are tracing shadowcovered cannula shapes in the patio tile.
A sad saxophone is a canonical antiphon among the vapor of the palms.
There are volatile cloudbursts and special tropical tools and uncanny gypsy moths.
Everything can become eye. Everything can become souled.
The apse remainder is a dim jeweled skull recess in the regrowth of strong bark.
The spines of the trees are shelled and armored and telescoping brown bone, flecked.
The jungle is vertebrate and veined running in fractal explosion patterns,
everbranching and reaching in the water dominion and solar gorge.
Magmatic thirst quenched by white circle and its complexity of myriad veiling.
The green lets emerge a turbulent golden schematic by way of water prism.
Great orbs burst in the turmeric pulp, in the flesh of imprints and forked methods.
From the resurrected fishnet as hammock comes the ice egg and geode crack of subliminal rock.
The boy emerges from the skirt of burnt paper with the body of a white mongoose.
He is a messenger from the long winding passage of dried and brittle scrolls.
The flying insects are rusted machines in the catastrophic granular of rainbowed drifts.
Simplistic genital diptych
the last resort of the gangrene king.
Warped ancestors in VCR tracking.
Embroidered tall tale
melts the glacial plateau
that surrounds the circle of fire.
All to close hands in prayer
in the vigils of the hermetic city,
a minus of scar tissue.
Evoking the seizure of her
in a high valleyroom
where the iris of the eye returns
to indict you
of sexual weakness.
A quiet car ride looms.
Jangled friars in poorly reconstructed
crop-circles, hentai canyon,
a stone’s throw
from the granite antenna
aimed at betelguise and a meteorite
hovering in pink spyware
and common rue.
MEN OF WAR
The contusion of the sky has produced one jet
and the meltedgold capillary
appears magenta ribbon
in the seventh dream corridor
where Natalya sleeps
in the exquisite architecture of an afghan rug
swallowed as a digestible blueprint
in the AI capture of new cognition.
The black dune is stood to make imperial coffee.
The fathers circle the flame in rigors.
The weather balloons inflate and are put to sepia clouds
that surrender delicate vines each like a mall necklace
that becomes a bright line of seaweed in March
on the moss of the stone of the window terrarium.
Ragnarok in the network of the month-to-month rentals
and the velvet bag containing greater and less than symbols
emptied on the butcher block to allow a glittering thing
as the woman across the alley collects cardboard
and sorts through the inevitable mire of purchase.
The drunk makes her way through aporia
only to arrive at the gossip of mermaids
surrounded by boardwalk trash and drying foam
at the terminus of the spit.
Their hair is knotted and dreaded
and their breasts are darkening in the sun
as they lie on the jagged canopy of the rocks
and tell arcane jokes about men of war.
They become luminous when they speak
of the total darkness of the final stratum,
gills quaking, teeth serrated and black.
THE SOLAR NIGHT
The Book of Kells on crimson velvet.
Instilled prodroma on Cornelia Street.
Mycology poder in the foyer
and the subterfuge amnesis.
Inhale the fluid ruin.
A blue thread.
When there is movement
in the vacant hall
she pushes the curtain
to the right
what is there.
Canis lupus in the solar night.
in the dream breaking
its own threshold.
A siamese cat on dry stone.
THE RUINS OF THE MARSH
The reeds are bending on top of the low buildings
and the monks wander the floating pathways in their brown robes.
The water is black, depthless, it is curved by the wind.
Spherical gatherings of bright flowers hover in the dark rooms.
There is a drone that seems to be making the air and the structure
and the golden sheen in the approaching evening of sky.
Desiccated machines can be found on the tile and stone.
There is the occasional antenna threaded to a star.
There is never a face. Never a word. There is the whisper of cattails.
A ritual has always just ended in humming shadow,
electric shadow, rainbow static cut by a grounded lightdoor.
Burnt and blackened scrolls. On the walls faded mandalas.
The birds are redbeaked, lithe and watchful,
as if sparrow and contemplative owl.
Ended cables, a bouquet of wire, once a cracked cycloptic screen.
I sleep in moonlight, out on the stone, the arc of blue
and its mute random of signal fires.
Against the horizon there are long bridges,
tendon, iron bone, the remnants of a giant.
There are the red electric lights, a pillar of smoke, two.
Once I saw a plane and I stood at the edge of the sector
a child, the plumbing cannot heat the water.
The food is unpredictable and sudden, sealed in plastic
or fallen a hectic bounty among candles in twilight.
I have never known the objective.
I have never received protocol or syntax.
The wolf appears with the full moon. I dream of snow.
It stalks with bright tongue the pathways above rolling darkwater.
Marble statues abused and fractured, missing appendage.
Toppled thrones in the cube of four doors.
A smashed oil lamp, book of braille, exploded nest,
a distant train song adheres to no pattern.
The monks leave the ground in full lotus.
I am bound to the horizontal abyss, joinery of stone.
Sometimes my hands glow, a humble wattage.
Sometimes there is a crystalloid memory shard
and I can place it in the altarbowl
crossed by two meridians.
I am given one more fragment in the eternal series.
Michael Borth is a writer from the Hudson Valley. His work has appeared in Forever Magazine, Fence, New World Writing, Expat Press, The Write Launch, and Cordite Poetry Review. He can be reached here: firstname.lastname@example.org
*Image credit: H.R. Giger, ‘Lord of the Rings I’, 1975.