Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsSpring 2012 v11n1
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You Have Nothing to Fear

but a small kitchen fire,
replied my new friend John,
so I will write this poem, which,
like John’s, will only include
‘real things,’ meaning
what’s wakened—
No dreams or gods, just
the facts
that make waking worth doing, like
watching boiling water
buffet up an egg
for a full five minutes, because
(I’d realized)
            a watched pot always boils—

was incredibly
            encouraging. Although it still hurt

            to be a human being—mandated

interactions with chairs,
your corporation of atoms, its forced
with air and food, is it any wonder
that extending a hand
            meant touching some grief? (today
            a student’s love poem,
                        “burdened with stars”)—

Like in the movie Hereafter,
how George (the psychic) realizes
he can love Marie
            only once he has seen her death—
It’s their Lazarus come-back
after a tsunami,
            actual (hers), emotional (his) . . .

When he touches you he can see
            your body’s end. You’ve asked him
to see it. You don’t want him
to see it.
But you need to come to,
you need to spit up the water
            from your listing

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