thornhill and static
for Steve Dickison
1 Claude Thornhill and static. early light on the square of the
four corners love these lights they blink and red and early
brung me morning flush with light rain grain. hand with fingers
red light blunked from out the flesh. the set-up.
he makes plans and they make plans and Audrey Totter too the
iron claw comes down in glass
and the idiot loves it. Paradise
with a warning.
2 the early morning coffee space begins at surface glass and runs
to local reality. no such thing but that’s how gravity is.
grave and demure. how gravity is. everything or most I know
comes from Monk on I
Surrender Dear. this is how the captured lights
3 everything laid out for life. Thornhill arranged by Mulligan.
Robin’s Nest. Ellington says
“The world will never know what it has lost in this beautiful
man,” says he then when Thornhill dies.
sit I still so red lights blink to dawn will come as top
banana. folk forms, that too. by
the light of the silvery moon Coleman
lantern Hawkins. this
nearly was mine. the red round street lights blink and blink
the red round robin bounces. it isn’t
the manichean heresy it’s
the manichean fallacy. this way lies the madness strung
through the mind’s bad knee say
4 up and down Fifth Avenue the crowds move in crowds. and
nosegays. red light green light stop and think in motion natch
in the open adjustments of time and of breath is history, everything.
you could see everything the long
open death and the march of delight. the honest ice man
stops and starts
his wagon on the street to end
all streets. and left behind are the bones and ice-boxes all
the sad young men. Thornhill
in the density of my head. this blinking morning pinpoint code.
mourning bring my head.
drop the beat behind the chord and shimmer. what
the hell the light comes creeping.
you to the end of the light. chop
chop float of being
gone life and float of chair
of being Cornet
5 death is the past in real light. on my way the whole room
turned with old machinery. just like that. a conversation takes
place at the edge of old water with all those lovelies dead gone
going home to ordinary. to normal. to the jewel of the
normal in the etched daffodil. to the light of the real through the
blue skies of that mournful song
of crossing the little creek with you. how I wanted just
to be. all the lovelies ranged in grass as minds and nodding
disavowals. cut my feet to ribbons did I. ran the stream
bed never wanted to be me again. paid my carfare every
morning as planet turned me topside. conduction is god in the
two for tea and you for me and me for you and
knowledge too. and how it seemed that we were all alone. dear.
without a proper sense of grief. all thought comes to
grief as all the places come. light gets interrupted
thud. and here we are. hello love. like me?
I see things clearly and know there’s a shift in the grass is
a mechanism. shutter me this.
the real light comes to stay with bells on. the memory
stacks itself. see that face and see that face. and the perchèd
tower. perched. a bird of ill-omen
is mostly a bird. oh
6 down at the intersection of fourth and b the light is not
yet upon us at each corner the circumscribed lights for no
on and off but all just red red red and red. Jess Stacy
takes that solo on the radio in the front seat empty empty
my life he says. my life is here I made it something else
for this brief time for this.
and when you hear it you’ll know. you’ll know and
every morning here will fall with march of crickets life to
in one long twitch of perfect one. one long pitch of solo
eyes rolled in one. that’s how it is. Jess Jess Jess.
rare as a butterfly moon when blink goes flopping half-
fold paper. intersection. bone white not white. flat and empty.
blink says stop says go says not. says solo loves it. so
low never lies.