All night the deed wanders
—enters some, exits others,
searching for its doer…

In macabre ratio
the living range,
Not a cosmos but an idiot Pleiades
Each part of which
needs no telescope
no sky to be a star—we who
Bite hot what has no eros—all dullard marketplace,
lemon-flavor, a burbling, birdless
Grotto of tech,
each fern refreshing
the spore:
to every algorithm
its bard, its Kyrie, its velvet case…

& where to hustle my liberties,
who my loneliness?
Excommunicated in my freedom from
the white cliffs,
Cut off from my fall:
Forget them
one by one,
the birds who
nested here,
their guano
white as the wind—
The construction they are no more
comes true
first in the mouth,
then the mind:
A wind from Saxony, a soda poured out
on the Port Authority,
in remembrance of you
who took the cup but
kept no burr
to remember her hide: What’s to eat here in Witchita?
See the scab of God at
the picket lines,
breaking justice
with a private care…

O how
We love our birthright,
how we live to pace its limits:
With a sword we
butter our toast,
make boutique the wilderness,
Root out
the phantasm in desire,
lick it dry:
A sprig is cut
from the stump of jesse, a triumph
without spectator, a sparrow
caught up in an
infinite oscillation of leaves…

What is it we are crossing over?

The ocean
sterile as a stadium at night—
Or Icarus preserved
The glassine pages of the sea

Timmy Straw

Timmy Straw is a writer and musician from Oregon. Editions Plane published her first chapbook, To Water, Everything is a Swimmer, and her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Spork, Tin House, and Weekday. She’s composed music for film and ballet, put out the album State Parks, and is currently working on a second. She also studies Russian at Reed College.

Photograph by Christie MacLean


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