Thursday, December 12, 2019

Excerpts From: & Idle Aegis by Patrick Redmond


Whereas, the kiss was denigrated when the rhythm of it kept time with thought
Whereas, Mary saw her son in a Rorschach and we only ambiguous nipples
Whereas, we spent a year medicated—underwater hearing voices that wanted us to be holy
Whereas, we no longer want to eat the self with the mother tongue

Whereas, recorded sounds of urgency were people forcing themselves on each other
             —not eroded tile silhouetting birds in the subway
Whereas we felt like our first erection
—wanting but not knowing where to place it
—wanting nothing more than hair on the navel and the sex of the animal made to leather

We are each other’s cistern   
We board our past weather after spreading citrus on our clitoris
We want to buy our friendly druggist a bouquet of valleys
We want our necklace of teeth to mean something
We wish our eyes xanthic
and envision our insides as paint
We wish every raw color were crushed to velvet and used as salt

—to wilt leeches from the aria’s in our stomach
We decide what the light looks like

We, Euclidean algorithms tattooed on a hip
We, impassible bridges over milk
We, displacement
We, weight of precious metals overflowing clawfoot baths
We, thumbprint angels made when climbing out steam drunk

We, chattering teeth pressed in linoleum


Whereas, Mary Accepts the Ambiguity

White linen-ed aureoles pierced with cubic zirconia,
I whistle the same three notes to announce a latent presence
as personable. I’ll admit there is art,
a monetized experience if you hide
the drugs when the plumber arrives.
The critic discusses the plumber as an interlocutor
in the aftermath. They do not get arrested when the heat is fixed.
Hallelujah! The peasant finds survival, hunkers down
till abandoned. Progress measured through memory
burying a horse shot out of compassion.
Of singing with a throat like a mastiff. Of dreaming
of owning a throat large enough to throw a heart.
Of mouths washed out with dove.

[My horns have gone the way of the Auroch]

My horns have gone the way of the Auroch
I’m ceaselessly milked of any small inherence

for food and housing. I must speak about death at 31,
but why?—I ask—the body—I’m reminded—
is exciting!
It needs to exist. You can feel

orgasm at the feet of pain
the body leaves when lending its hands, after chasing

abrasions, lips, hair
sultry rejectamenata cleaved—in the biblical
sense—in reduction of longing. Ain’t sex

sad now? Ain’t sex all milk baths and lilly
on the nipple? As if the perennial is an accessory

to the breast, as the Black Sea
whispering to sunken 9 B.C.:

I shall hold you because I’m worried. They’ll scavenge

all they thought renewable. You
the remnants

 of a privilege asking,
What is that animal outside?

How on Earth did it find its way
into the city?

Patrick Redmond received his MFA at Brooklyn College. He currently teaches composition and creative writing at CUNY. Recent poems may be found in Bomb Cyclone, Prelude, and Paragraphitti.

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