Never trust a country where the graves of the poets
Have been devoured with the stones and flowers
Never dream of the motherland touching you with her poisoned fingernails
Smokestacks, clouds stabbed with screwdrivers
Missed traffic lights are the beauty of the landscapes
Rats wipe stale words from teeth dictionaries and tinfoil hats as a matter of routine
They can’t hear the screams they eat
After a subway train has passed
Who can tell how fast air and water digest
everything inside? They call it conservation
of inconvenience. Every birthplace
is someone’s grave, they say. Look at the
feline deities. They are as tall and shiny
as possible. They always leave
their fingers in the gloves, brains
in the mortarboards. They hate caves,
trapping pits and wombs. Foreign words
bring them pure amusement unspoilt by understanding.
But then again, which of the languages they use
isn’t really foreign? Poems for ancient bacteria to imbibe
are unsound like sequences of pinpoint winds.
We lived in a movie theater.
We read books about war and fed the pages to mice,
while geese kept falling on us through the ceiling.
You don’t believe me, I know,
but they had been all alone in the sky.
We threw the dice to decide
who would take a bath first.
Archangels resided in our shoes
and played soccer with our noggins.
It was disgusting to think of sleeping
in a hamster’s pouch, in the belly
of a galloping horse or in a winged eye.
It felt like being a driven nail.
We were ready to burn the tongues
of all the storytellers we had ever met.
Flocks of birds lived with us singing about headaches,
there was always soup in the bowls, always sins in the hearts,
and insects alighted on blankets and pillows in the morning.
We counted the hairs of each other’s heads,
and the numbers were fetid like hondas born by a piebald cow.
Rabbits grew their legs leaving them in the snow for a night.
People talk, telephones ring, dogs bark,
suns and moons mostly hide,
earthworms intertwine in the dark.
Cats wail inside flat briefcases,
destined to become immortal.
Creatures devoid of chakras,
hoofed fish, deer with fins
cherish their headless guides.