poems by Rena J. Mosteirin

Blog Archive

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Whales, Mermaids, Magic, Brazil

Imagine whales extinct/ no songs, no more clicking whale-chatter,
no more flumes, waves, wings. No breaching, not even in Brazil,
no dancing and no honey/ for us sailors reading backward and forward
through the history of all mammals. Now we are blind to polestars,
to our own seas and seasons/ a thick wool of pollution wraps the world;
eyes, mouth, everything stuffily built

to encourage smoggy thoughts and physical break-down. Build-up
clogs out everything thicker than chat.
It's like language but distressed, our whale-less world
roaring towards extinction. The machine approaches Brazil's
ecosystem of supermodels, beaches and soccer stars.
We've come to break their hearts. If we may be so forward,

we've come with the Olympics. Forward:
computers weave with only that one command. Databases design buildings,
causing all the mermaids to give up thoughts of land and starry
eyed people with nothing to look at but the enchantments of chatrooms
generating illusions in little white jets to Brazil.
Computers will learn to be the birds and the whales of the world.

Mermaids hear us/ their ghosts haunt and sing to the listening worlds.
Mermaids hear us/ sunk on ship-fronts/ hair, nipples and thrust/ forward.
Mermaids hear us/ shell-to-the-ear, whispering lore Brazilian.
Mermaids hear us/ through a listening device they break, re-break/re-build.
Mermaids hear us, like so much lizard skitter and chatter.
One hundred thousand silver stars

say that mermaids still exist, star-gazing,
trying to save the whales somehow, for a world
that does not deserve whales, nor song, nor love. Just chatting
little ladies and soft animals, freak-showed and fast-forwarded,
where will you go when the world lacks water? Rebuiling
whale-ghosts come from back in time and ask: Can you, Brazil?

Can any country bring the whales back? Mermaids favor Brazil;
the best pressed ghosts, the sights and air and splash and stars,
all night flashing on the site where something pre-distressed shall be built.
What else can we expect from the greedy mouth of the world?
We ate all the whales, forcing the flood of extinction forever forward.
What about God? You know what they say about him: he's all chatter

and no Brazil. God believes in the orgiastic world,
in stars beaming the green light, in beating forward,
boats against/ the current builds/ borne back ceaselessly into the chat.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Christmas Poem

Collapsed, she can't subscribe,
as she falls, pales and clots. We watch as she turns terrible.
Then that awful angel stays up all night eating shortbread;
waiting on the Boogeyman,
waiting on Santa Claus,
either or both, she says one is as likely as the other.

Each cancels out the other,
she says. To this theory I cannot subscribe,
not even for (just barely keeping his eyes open) Santa Claus.
Go back to Winter and bleed. Dawn comes, cold and blue and terrible;
bring on the newspaper's nightmares, bring on the daytime TV Boogeyman,
with angels we eat maple shortbread.

Let's say it's because there is nothing but shortbread,
let us say the author of the collapse is always going to be the other.
I'll have a decaf double latte over Baghdad, says the Boogeyman.
Tell them we will not subscribe.
(This life is no one's life.) Tell them we are terrible.
Say it's because there is no Santa Claus.

No one can see the structure here but Santa Claus
and all he's got this year is pale, bloody shortbread.
Dawn comes and the blood clumps inside her like tree branches, terrible
twisting with both fists and reaching towards the sky. There are other
ways to reach, new ways to describe, old ways to subscribe
to this pale internal piracy. Blame it on the Boogey(man)

because he lacks branches. That's right, there is no structure to the Boogeyman,
no blood/bone/skeleton, he is a fearful jelly. Santa Claus
on the other hand, is all thick trunk and total subscription
clustered like knuckles, balling and releasing, in snow-bright blue dawn. Shortbread
eating all year round (this life is no one's life) in the other
place, the Tropic of Terror.

There is nothing so terrible
about the Boogeyman
in fact, it's just another way of saying Santa Claus.
Pass the shortbread
back to Winter, reject both the heat and the cold, in Spring we shall subscribe.

Collapse the blue and terrible (just barely keeping his eyes open) Santa Claus,
give the Boogeyman his pale gift of shortbread,
meanwhile, the tree branches beseech the other in the sky, the snow tells us to subscribe.