A Calculation of the Trajectory


The sparrow hawk, circling the door to its prey’s tiny nebula.
There is entirely too much content in this world!
If only I had had a son.
Large hands and a crooked nose.

A cautious tailor, ragged dreams, the grass dripping with nocturnal insects. A tall
star spoke of sadness from a constellation of scissors, returning its old geometry to the
nocturnal eyes of the descendant tribe. Moonlight spilled into the tailor’s worn hands as
he pulled down the soft cloth of the night sky, soothing the cracks in his warm palms.
Sex like a thrush escaping a dense thicket.

A voice dressed as the night leaking into itself was ready to tell the tailor’s story.
It was the tailor’s voice and he was already a slave to the chapter that swallows the sky
with its feet. The poor man watched as an animal like himself, made of water, returned to
the perpetual orphanage of the river, an animal so sad it could have lived in his wounds.

A moth awoke from the dreams of the moon’s mistaken friends. Some of the words
are lost, others have gone home alone to the soft veins of milk-light, the rooms of salt.

Something in the spaces between the trees, that place in the brain where night
opens a warm pouch.
You in your body, I in my mouth.
Fallen apart, the pieces twitch.
A child’s broken tooth.
A letter from home.

When the dream ends, it claims your footprints.
Give them away.

The goatherd’s son was overweight. He studied calculus in his spare time, but that
was not his reason for torturing horseflies or persecuting lazy clouds.

I held the ocean to my ear. A nursery rhyme popped from my mouth, and I chased
it down the beach. It squealed with delight when I caught it.

Why had the quail eggs taken on such a mysterious color, and why was the arrival
of rain announced by a child’s coloring book?

How poignant to see the boudoir littered with chicken feathers.

The moonlight turned yellow and she wanted to know if I loved her.

You can come in now.

My fingernails were already evidencing a great deal of raw experience. I was
listening. I was becoming another tailor, a collector of seams, sewing tailor to tailor,
hemming the night’s winged cuff.

The animals were quiet. Trees grew under their shirts.

I have never shared my curfew. It’s a little known disease, but it’s enough. I
determined the loss per minute created by the small hole in the fabric. I wasn’t sure what
I was losing.

When I said, “snail,” I meant “antelope,” the nape of your neck mounted
above the location of the fire.

No one is holding the river hostage tonight.
O my hostage, no one is holding the river.

The sky, of course, is blue and above us. This is not sad but surprising. After that
we stopped wondering why we hadn’t stopped wondering.

Rich Ives is the author of Tunneling to the Moon: A Psychological Gardener’s Book of Days currently being published in serial @ Silenced Press everyday in 2014 and forthcoming in paperback. Begin from the beginning, catch up, read daily. Just refer to the Burrow Guide.