Cars

This poem first appeared in Jacket (#8, 1999).

(for Bruce Beaver)

   surfacing breathless
   in the peaceful domain
   from the tunnel like dogs
   a sax's sporadic coughs of sound
   beneath these great figs spread their roots
   like fingers digging into sand or dirt
   or a bridge sinking into memory
 
   now the cars come out
   green water sloshes -
   a bell rings suddenly
        in alarm
   then stops
             another grumble
   Jazz
 
   you stencilled it on the page
   i saw eternity written on the floor in chalk
   as the train plummeted towards the city
   the lines looped, joining like belts
   my buckled notes & letters
 
   Cars        spluttering
   shade & sunlight     wavering
   in the astonished green water
   like your words

     & Jazz
 
   domains of sound
   a moving ferry
 
   & someone walking past.

O hai, you were saying?