Barry Schwabsky – 2 Poems

Barry Schwabsky

2 Poems

Willing and Not Willing

Viewed from God’s balcony
the sky makes no sense
but evening air
gets pushy that way. Something’s gone
and what remains? Open-air theater
of gorgeousness
and gloom. Occasion for painting’s
rage and
             Your saying
is what makes it so
(quoting “everybody will help you”)
as thought keeps driving further toward its fires
but lightning’s not meant to strike twice
in one face, I mean
the one remembered
as a favorite book with pages now brittle
for having once been left open
in the rain.

Another Song

Suck the air from my mouth. Push it back
through my nostrils. Did I say
“Breathe?” You, my shrine ajar.
My cracked reliquary. Feeble heart. Even in

a poem beginning, “My heart aches,”
no one lets me down the way I want
or, in truth, knows how to press me
like the grass flattened beneath your sandal.

return to SHAMPOO 22