h o m e........
TEN VARIATIONS ON A WEIGHT-BEARING AIR
Variation 1: Weight Bearing Air
What is a body anyway—
Variation 2: Weight-Bearing Air
Death, as predictable as wind—
Variation 3: A Weight Baring Air
The first-ever headstones
Variation 4: A Wait Bearing Air
Good call, not trusting
Variation 5: Await Baring Air
whoever it was that made that facile choice
Variation 6: A Weight-Baring Air
Body as angle of incidence,
Variation 7: Weight Baring Air
Death, which had been effect,
Variation 8: Weight Bearing Heir
This is not an epicedium, sung only in the presence of the dead.
Body as rodeo of the soul,
Variation 10: A Weight Baring Err
A body flies
The definitions of algebra come from (in the order they appear): Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003; Little Oxford Dictionary of Word Origins edited by Julia Cresswell, Oxford University Press 2014; http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=algebra
Beneath a stagger of stars the herd untangles,
The glass beads of heaven’s black abacus
NOTE: “Matter tells space how to curve. Space tells matter how to move,” is Einstein (as recalled from memory by Neil DeGrasse Tyson)
The prevalent model has the soul as nougat
But imagine, instead, the body as speaker,
You protest—this theory suggests the body
Imagine the body as irritant, a grain of sand inside
You who hate this proposal must never
that releases, finally, the soul. You want
is vice versa. You see the soul as map
body as an anchor in the sea. The body
the body says to the soul, I will not let you go
a body and the space in which it is.
NOTE: Italicized lines are from Genesis 32:26.
Rarely survives at elevations of less than 1500 feet. Found, in the US, at 5000-12,000 feet
Its smooth white bark marked by thick black scars, where low branches have pruned themselves
Leaves nearly heart-shaped, with edges finely saw-toothed
Leaves with flattened petioles, even in the most gentle breeze appearing to tremble
A stand of aspens = one single organism, stretching up to twenty acres, roots entangled under-ground
All aspens of one root system have the same branching structure; in autumn, all changing to the exact same color at the exact same time
A stand of aspens can live to be thousands of years old—might be the oldest known living thing
NOTE: Right-flushed lines are from Isaiah 52:7-9.
BIO: Jessica Goodfellow’s books are Mendeleev’s Mandala (Mayapple Press, 2015), The Insomniac’s Weather Report (Three Candles Press First Book Prize winner, reissued by Isobar Press, 2014), and the chapbook A Pilgrim’s Guide to Chaos in the Heartland (Concrete Wolf, 2006). Her work has been featured in Best New Poets, Verse Daily, and The Writer’s Almanac, and she has received the Chad Walsh Poetry Prize from the Beloit Poetry Journal. She lives in Japan.
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