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Zachary Jean Chartkoff

"Untitled"

It is another sweltering night. Some
thing is moving on this page. You who can
not be the sun's right hand or the left thumb
of the goat god Pan, the sun's blood goat Pan,
you must then be love. The bad love the stars
give, all glitter eyeliner. What began
as a sort of hunger, like the guitar's
riddle, ended here. A love that is ours
must be a myth. No love is too foreign
to trust. Think of Pan in the woods, singing
the earth alive; and his song is moonlight
and sun. Think of him now, the violent one,
the one you want to be, the one rising
out of this myth to become the hot night.

"Ida Cox"

Between these four lips and this kiss. Between
these toes and the rain. Between wild sumac
and the grapevine. Between the clear morphine
drip and the radio I would come back
as Ms. Ida Cox. Spreading blue dog booze
on "My Mean Man Blues," "St. Louis Blues," "Black
Crepe Blues" and "Wild Woman Don't Have the Blues."
To make laughter sigh. To make a wisecrack
out of death and loss and love. I say, get
up. I say, get up. I say, sing "Gypsy
Glass Blues." I say, rise from the dead, shadow
sigh "no more, no more." You are alive, wet
with song, Ida. Scat, burn, sing. You carry
the scent of the grave everywhere you go.

 

"clouds or caramel or rain"

Where will I go with such thin wrists? Often
I watch snails crawl through bogs. I'm unable
to find such narrow roads, compass. Drunken
in the devastated paddies, scornful
of dried beans and mulberry. Silly bean!
You do not taste of clouds or caramel
or rain. I'm drunk on rain. Salt, milk between
my teeth. O love, be my road, my little
dirt trail. I want to feel you everywhere
I go. In my mouth, on my skin, about
my feet. Like gross dust, do not rise above
me. Do not leave my behind. It's unfair
I am lost. Where am I going without
your well-worn path? without your tipsy love?

 

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