6.02 / February 2011

Four Poems

(letter to her, without her, in red)

listen to this poem

Today was an O so lovely today!
Each flower I passed smiled at me
with its bright bright head & I
was breathing in the blue air. I said
hello to every orange & yellow scribble
drawn out from the big round sun
& the gray, the inconsolable gray?
Ah – those dour projections blew off
like dandelion fluff on the breeze.
You’re anticipating the left turn,
the sudden veer into the weighty
physicality of sorrow, the heft
of remorse or the frantic fuzz
of anxiety. But the thing is, my hope
is a color that don’t come from no
petal, won’t match the shiny linoleum
of anyone’s kitchen & my song
is a startlingly new pitch & tone
made by rubbing two bodies together,
born again every moment & meeting
the lovely today head on today.

(letter to her like a rocket ship)

listen to this poem

I want my words to crash land
on your planet before I get there,
want them to bite into your skin
or bury themselves in your pretty eyes.
I want to call your alien world
my home, live forever in a weekend
with you under three stunning suns
in a hushed red sky. I want to cradle
your whole you with all of my me,
romance you – yes! – with a cosmic song
about robots who have hearts
in their heads & a chest full of uncertainty,
terror-sized iguanas running rampant
& quieted by the hum that I’m humming,
by distances closed faster than the opening
of an eye because for you I’d risk it all,
for me I’ll never sit & watch days drift
& for us I’d leave tomorrow, my ship
like an arrow pointing west like an arrow,
waiting for that one burst from the static,
that one sparkly syllable calling me home.

(letter to her, while her concept stands next to me)

listen to this poem

I want to reach past what isn’t there & run
toward that new thing I see waiting
like a weight on the horizon, the darker
red dot in the eye of a red sun setting
because I’ve wasted the day feeling
my way back into myself, back into you,
& the distance between us which I
am trying to divide, trying to split,
& all this imaginary math is thwarting
my simple words, just words that can never
reach what they’re groping toward.
There are so many suns between now
& when. My head hurts with this thinking.
I want a lyrical vibration, that humming;
the nature of the experiment is that soon
I can tear off running after all those things
I can’t hold. And we’ll see what adds up then.

(letter to her, dazzling & tremendous, between)

listen to this poem

Heading east, driving almost 80 because
I can’t handle being between & if I have to
be somewhere else, I guess I’ll go back home.
There are busted out cars & big empty houses
dotting this part of the interstate & sometimes
there’s a wind & when there’s a wind it just
blows right through, echoing in through
those shells, knocking around & at least
in that long lonely sound you can hear the shape
of what’s missing. I hope there’s more to this
than being happy alone, more to all this than
having two separate good times. I can stare
at this memory I have of the sun but it’s not
the sun & I’d be a fool to look at that picture
at all when the real thing is blazing outside.

Nate Pritts is the author of the forthcoming book POST HUMAN and six previous books of poetry. His stories have appeared in The Collagist and JMWW. He lives in the Finger Lakes region of New York state. [www.natepritts.com]
6.02 / February 2011