miércoles, octubre 17, 2007

Seven Sonnets From William Bain

Water: A short sonnet sequence



Each broken branch in the dream
is an eraser, connecting, perhaps conning
writing, the arm, heart, sap moving
in the earth. The dream.... If leaf
covers the glass, the language
is veins, but still glass.
Still water, movement perhaps
beneath the dream, inside broken branch.
The speed of the eye can receive
light, yet never keep up.
The tiring swimmer, resting
in still water, measures flat glance,
glass reflecting minutes to shore,
to branch, leaf, mote.



Green lawn expanse, bright sunlight.
Word magnet traces water.
There was water, too, that Anglesey
walk upward, sheets of weed
cover hiding the red thread,
the underflow of deserted dream—
zoomed fence of friends’
divorce I’d held close.
False laughter gave away half
the choice loyalty was asking.
My white cottage home, my ground,
slid roadward in divided silence.
Landscape so bright it hurts.



Another thing about thunder is dirt out
of the rain following—
Traces of gases and dust water
our knives as we wallow or dust bathe
or gallop into battle. The offkey
singers—do they hear Callas and say
callous, or is it callous in,
cailloux out? Bright October morning,
history before the song, blocks out
cloud over dusty hill, above new asphalt.
Altitude, mass, elegy disappear, string
switching freight roar, alarmed bell
blown along the glint of track,
track glinting in lightning.



Band sand rand Dan flowering,
silver trail snail crab mountain rising.
Pausing outside the Jonqueres exit of Urquinaona station,
a short translation of some bounded part
of Barcelona, the lights on Laietana—
the throng I watch this November night.
For the English to find the full city is impossible.
Sunday morning, or Sunday evening, the move back
goes to cards, poker, say, or bridge,
and a bluff. This vision, then, in
the direction of Barceloneta: the bright
playing cards in fourteen rows, the flies
about us as we sweat on the sand:
perception of absent water.


Sonnet Lullaby: Sleep

Come on, now, let’s go to sleep...
Look at all these colorful fish here,
wiggling their colorful little tails
and fins, drowsily, in the shifting
currents of the deep, deep water.

Other animals come and swim, too, by
the time space ship arrives...
Bear and Dog play, jumping around. At
some point it won’t work: some
problem seems to come up. Who’s who here?

Then the bright little dog icon springs away upward,
toy species or a species of toy. Sublime.
Smiling, he sits there, fitting in.
The currents tug. This way. That way.



Greenwich and the beroached place you left
have to come, willy nilly, poem unable
to find the eye, the third, the beast.
It is additional text put off,
flowers overgrown that tumble,
then recede to photography.
You’ll be out. I phone ahead anyway.
You’re out. I walk over anyway,
through a fast New York crowd,
Friday before work’s out. Three,
now four outs in one sonnet: a trend.
Above the frame of real steel girder,
in the photograph’s mirrored space, home flies in:
augmented fourth of summer repertory.


Mind auto

It isn’t that reading wasn’t
thinking other thoughts before.
(Thinking thoughts echoes though.)

In the notebook—“the” notebook!—
in a notebook, I draw
car car car car car car

smoke vroooom,
then try to convince myself
the drawing was thoughtless,
pen simply following hand, no

mind. No-mind. Nomind.
Light turbulence somewhere’s
pulled rain clouds into giant jeans.
Nomind. Only water, water, water—vroooom.

William Bain grew up in Indiana and earned an English Literature degree with a Chemistry minor from Indiana University. In addition to writing, he is also a visual artist whose work has been in collective exhibitions in Barcelona, Spain. His poems and stories have appeared in various paper and electronic publications, most recently in RedRiverReview, Roundonline, and previously in Zone. Currently, he works as a translator and is a PhD student in Literary Theory at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona.

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