Five Poems

by Simon Perchik

Everywhere at once, aimless
though the day lilies
no longer make a sound

are used to how the sun
can still be found in moonlight
that has no rain left to comfort

with warm stones and the mist
that is now your heart
is circling night over night

as some giant red cloud
listening for the scent
from when a flower held your hand

too long and the calm
that has its fragrance: your echo
faint from waving goodbye.

Not yet feathers though you
still breathe in the smoke
trailing from some climbing turn

hidden by clouds and weightless
circling this tree allowed at last
to shed its bark, warmed

the way each leaf expects
a better life somewhere, takes hold
with its wings around the Earth

carried up hillside over hillside
spurting more and more blood
from your eyes, your ears

till their shadow flies from under you
escapes this time, hovering overhead
as branches and evenings

and further though their roots
come by to remember why this sky
ended its wandering and closed.

Pulling this bowl to your lips
as if traction was needed
though it must know by now

why you dig with the same whisper
that once beat back the wind
and the sky changing direction

–you lift with what became
the moon, still crawling in its cage
one end to the other, that no longer

struts in the open, is terrified by air
wants to cool and in your throat
crumbles from exhaustion and splashing

–you make a spray so this spoon
will empty in your arms overflowing
as grass and so many fingers.

The door knows why it opens
and still you’re not used to it
could be a sound from the 40s

gutting this radio
the way all skies darken
fill with distances

–you listen for the slow turn
the Earth never forgot
though a hidden crack

keeps the room from exploding
and costs you nothing
has already started its climb

spreads out –with both arms
you begin to crawl
and not yet an old love song.

You begin to sweat, for hours
the way these stars poke through
and everything has come true

–it’s a knack you learn
quickly, pulling up small stones
–that’s it! afterwards

you bring back those same days
as evenings that no longer
say anything, the darkness

is enough, lets your fingertips
pin down the Earth, hold it
drain it –afterwards

you put back its night
as once and never again
though your shadow too

falls from a sky swept away
for rain and your hand
wider than usual, gone.