from *Semiramis If I Remember: (self-portrait as a mask)
by Keith Waldrop (Avec Press)
"...and, behold, it was a dream."
A "seasonal affective disorder" has been detected in the
crust of a star. Do not confuse "auspicious" with "holy."
We live in a crossing-place called "city." The past is a
buried "night of time."
Torn petticoats, instant decisions, anonymous angels-
here we give in to the notion of "poetry as picture" and
strive for the garment of "style."
Concealment across all "surfaces." *Time of night.* Thin
film of color, insecurely attached. As though "all this"
were in the dark.
Toward the end of my life, I find myself in a region
Unattractive fragments of once impressive structures I
see here, and then- again- here.
Familiar desires. Mellowed antipathies. Best to avoid
But suspecting speech in noises, I listen for ambient
signals, the ground from which words figure.
Not the city now there. (Where I have never been.) Not,
I suppose I should say, a city ever *there.*
Anywhere. Any there.
Nor was that city ever *now.*
And who am I, to speak of time as "mine"?