Dara Wier
Land of Steady Habits

Goats with baby goats chewed on shirts
On several rows of singing blue clotheslines.
More horses were everywhere (wild horses in
Wyoming and Montana) some were for them, some
Against them. Scorpions, spiders, tarantulas
& lizards stayed in places they wanted to be.
A river, wide and deep and filled with grit (&
Film canisters, fan belts, tin cans, pistols,
Printing presses, piano harps, harness straps)
Loosened from times a thousand miles off, kept
To its course (for the most part, when we let it).
Gods gone loco kept us up all night perorating
Over their pitiful stories (we liked our clock
Precisely because it no longer cared to tell us
Time and looked like something lost without a
Cause, with no purpose, with nothing to lose).
A sloth’s hair grows more slowly than any hair
In the world. I glowed in the dark when thoughts
Of you filtered in. I marked the spot. Darkly
You gathered momentum & scattered it everywhere.
In a matter of minutes you were long overdue for
A crucial juncture (you showed me your seams).
We anticipated a retroactive prelapsarian motion.
Way too many hours had been given to synchronized
Thinking. That was a waste of time. Therefore
Chicago claims it has populated the world with
Fine zippers, or slide fasteners as they once were
Called, as Chicago once was a dismal swamp and
Now it's not, with its river and beautiful
Buildings. It could go either way. Peacocks
Are dragging their tails in dusty quarters of time.
When I close my eyes I can see them sweeping.

Another Factor May Have Been the Course of Time

Anybody melancholy admires a willow
Broken as it is, messy & frangible
Incessantly sweeping and unsweeping
Thoughtless in the best sense
Tenseless, mindlessly eternal
& tangled not & doubled-back &
Unconscious yes & surveillant as
It oscillates serene & superficial thus
And of course through a thousand
Registers of green this and green
That analgesic swerve sussurations
Heavy on the swell & sway, light
On the shredded surplice index,
Delicious swash vibrations applied
In the brain wave exchanges, vox
Angelica hung-over & hoarse, no
Worse, ineffable surplus searches,
Sequential cascade quotation series,
Serial catharsis procession services,,
Unreasoning suspension sessions,
Assembling serration luster motives,
Reappraisal creases in the wistful
Dismals, at long last the cold wind
Was done, an uneasy peace ensued.

Invisible in the Torn Out Interiors

A man looked at us across his little dish
Of watercress and peas and said he’d wasted
Five years. We couldn’t ask him doing what?
He said he knew he’d let some thing alive die
And didn’t know how to get it back again now
That it was gone. He looked as if he were
About to cry, as if a fresh death wanted him
To mourn. He talked as if the place he’d been
Had so unwelcomed him it had ruined his soul,
As if it were a place into which drained an
Absolute dead air. He said he’d left no friends
Behind, no one who’d notice he was gone.
And here he was without a job, no place his to
Live, no one his to love. We said welcome home.