Thursday, July 22, 2010

"The Present Is Always Coming Up to Us, Surrounding Us"


Beginning with a Phrase from Simone Weil

There is no better time than the present when we have
lost everything. It doesn't mean rain falling
at a certain declension, at a variable speed is without
purpose or design.
The present everything is lost in time, according to laws
of physics things shift
when we lose sight of a present,
when there is no more everything. No more presence in
everything loved.

In the expanding model things slowly drift and every-
thing better than the present is lost in no time.
A day mulches according to gravity
and the sow bug marches. Gone, the hinge cracks, the
gate swings a breeze,
breeze contingent upon a grace opening to air,
velocity tied to winging clay. Every anything in its
peculiar station.

The sun brightens as it bleaches, fades the spectral value
in everything seen. And chaos is no better model
when we come adrift.
When we have lost a presence when there is no more
everything. No more presence in everything loved
losing anything to the present. I heard a fly buzz. I heard
revealed nature,
cars in the street and the garbage, footprints of a world,
every fly a perpetual window,
unalloyed life, gling, pinnacles of tar.

There is no better everything than loss when we have
time. No lack in the present better than everything.
In this expanding model rain falls
according to laws of physics, things drift. And every-
thing better than the present is gone
in no time. A certain declension, a variable speed.
Is there no better presence than loss?
A grace opening to air.
No better time than the present.

—Peter Gizzi


Tous Les Matins du Monde

Goodness is hard on the body,
a distracted mind unable to doze in fitful sleep.
The dove rattles the mind into thinking
it has a body of thought--complete
& symbolic--the gray feathers perched
outside the pale cut square of silver.
Say then, we belong to that window,
that warble, and suddenly we belong too,
the silver car in the yard, even a tiny silver hammer.
All vehicles of travel
disclose the mind's need to wonder in perfect forms.
Even if the skiffsman don't come to this bed
to rock me to sleep--to wander the tired stones again
and worn teeth we remember to hold onto a world
for this life might not take us the whole way.
That shape of an idea, the concept, or donnée
travels farther than the instrument can register.
The spindle whirs beyond its order.
Something must be moving at incredible speed.
With pure speed I address you, reality.

Peter Gizzi


In Defense of Nothing

I guess these trailers lined up in the lot off the highway will do.
I guess that crooked eucalyptus tree also.
I guess this highway will have to do and the cars

and the people in them on their way.
The present is always coming up to us, surrounding us.
It's hard to imagine atoms, hard to imagine

hydrogen & oxygen binding, it'll have to do.
This sky with the macular clouds also

and that electric tower to the left, one line broken free.

Peter Gizzi


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