Lanthanum 1.6

6

Laced like ice-fantasia into the snowpatch-dirt
beneath dim January light, these caverns
of streets, where we used to walk together
over Providence. A watercolor, watery...

layers of frozen phosphorus… a Bruegel scene
of venery and venison. Hard to explain –
voids (absences, au fond). A miniature line
of tornados. Little eddies in the riverine

backwash, beneath caked limestone (frozen
beards, stalactite-justices). There, off the
bridge you sailed (about this time of year).
Remembering you, unburied now (Ojibwan

dreamer, spark off the smithy) – as the lover,
not the beloved. Magnanimous messenger,
elder alder tree – whose emptying gesture
echoes the keening poverty of every

anxious child, enraptured of his father's
smile (that tense suspended 7th chord).
So in these solitary winter courtyards
everything grows more simple, real.

A sort of model of renunciation.
Better not to have, than having everything,
nothing
. Better to hoist sail, rotating
on one toe, careening round an only sun –

til you recoil, to strike once more
the name of fire, brazen, Promethean;
to sound, resound, the source, the origin
of so much anxious longing (heart's long cure).