O After O by Robert Vivian

O After O

To know you have been written on years ago by someone else’s hand, someone else’s

heart, to feel the words coming for me as one of their forlorn own, to hear the ink deep

inside me stir and try to say, try to utter, oh, the most amazing and beautiful things, O

after O and then O again, the drop dead center of nothing, nowhere, nada, the gaping

mouth I am heir to, this page and brief racing of ink, my aging fingers, the joy deep

inside my heart that has no cause, no reason in this young century of mayhem, this

headlong sentence with humble radishes for company, dirt under my fingernails and

poems racing in my blood, to turn the pages of a book written in Arabic, to know myself

finally as one who simply is with the earth beneath my feet, these rhapsodical words

that keep singing all praise to the sky and river and the misty fog hovering over the

fields that is my one true breath and breathing and every name whose shout and

whisper is commensurate with everything that runs and crawls and flies and stands

alacrity still at the heart of every verb, every movement and stillness, every longing and

yearning stretched out to an eternal Y, the alphabet I was born to play with, every back

cast and false cast, every hook embedded in my very own flesh, every stab of pain and

clarity and truth, every glass of vodka that tears the cellophane cover off of this world,

every poem I am given to write, memorize, or recite not knowing what it means only

that it sings and hums of a precious mystery and the clay that is this brief dancing body

whose limbs reach out to all there is, reaching for the oceans and the mountains and

windy plains, reaching even now, my love, to the ever shimmering stars.

Robert Vivian – Is the author of two meditative essay collections; The Tall Grass Trilogy, Water and Abandon and, Cold Snap as Yearning and The Least Cricket of Evening. His first poetry book is called Mystery My Country – he has co-written Traversings with the poet Richard Jackson. He teaches at Alma College and is a core faculty member at The Vermont College of Fine Arts.

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s