Tuesday, November 22, 2011


image borrowed from bing


A friend writes me
a letter, can you believe
tells me he’ll look up my poem’s subject
on the Internet, that endlessly ramifying root
holding us all together as we sway above the earth.

I think fine, I think
of the undulating flights of sandhill cranes
finding their way through a breezy heaven,
the rank perfumes of lakes and rivers below
their guiding compass.

I think sure, I think
of the busy ants outside my door as they signal
one another to carry in more food,
the soft sibilance of antly scraping telling
us the wisdom of saving.

I think yes, yes, why not
go to the cold glass page impersonal as a glove
go to it, the book is there these days,
or a view of it, though somewhere
in a dim library you’ll find
its original dusty and ignored
its pages yellowing beneath
the smudged lipstick left there once by a girl
who read it in bed, her warm flesh pressing.

Robert Burlingame

Posted over on Bobby Byrd's site White Panties and Dead Friends

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