Reed Bye

from Fire for Thought

In an instant further thought arrives as plague
unwanted, not to be reconciled--
the thrill is gone, well, that’s the feeling--
mindfulness removed,
a snared flute. The catch: no allowance
for birdsong, hummed in through the yard
No scheme of things, or reason for season or
cosmic sense, the order you’re in
            Too much one thought, too much that thought
No accomplishing vehicle to enter stripped of design
No guru as guide, purified mind-flame, just clutter of
ideas in the cabin
But there is something in the way she turns her head
uplifted eyes, a quizzical gleam--
Finality of what? The thing under the
surface, a place you may remember
to go, happily not knowing the way
Are you ready, monster?
to feel what we feel is really ours?
Receive safe passage through these waters
Reclaim territory from those who moved
while we slept in self-absorption
The greater birthright you are heir to
The prow of this ship that cuts along
bouncing on cold waves
Every day in his cabin the captain grows
more monomaniacal
            Come, open the scope of expedition
beyond predictable delusion
Let him to see these
storms, rough waters as fuse
            Sit, monster, with him, encourage more span
as he leans to his compass
            Settle the needle’s axis in his root
Can’t stay as long as I wanted
Young bucks kept off as long as I could
ordered in their orderly formation
A couple of cocks doodled on a wall
in serpentine rhythm
Where is the weather lady? Mr. Species
woke up cool beside the Mrs.
Nobody knew the shoes
til they were worn or
which man’s laughter
poised on the rock like a gull
surveying leavings of surf-swirl
Delights of the refectory’s
transposed memories
declared in the attic, gems in the basement
start to move and talk
each a little quieter now--
the system’s singing and sighing
mushrooms arriving on turf--
Accidents eventually weave into vocations
life sentences
Such good clear seeing arranged in pockets
but overall blur about what one can do with
intuitive parts, colorful tracing
edging the light knocking over a lamp
Neurosis of need—a blanket of grain
All that you know about being alone
The energy up from the perineum
made for being alive—what happens
today, unknown
Everything arranged after the fallout
How many parts will be keyed to eyes
adding the last piece
of the drawing to conclude
nuts and shells
losing of stems
source rites, avocets in shoals
what it means to be a school
Hard to argue your apparent fate--
demon caught in the shrubbery--
Don’t speak too soon of what’s to come
thin ice
When will you knit some dragon underwear
against this tenderness
breathing? When perspective’s gained, the leaves
reveal a ring marked off for flight
as the promontory erodes
what watches its bass-producing sounds?
At what point are they said to be in tune?
Something makes something else
beautiful and charged—knock-kneed
molecules dancing to the Dead--
Only an instant giving succor
when someone says “brilliant”
there really is no use trying to
re-capture the flag
but clarify the window that calls to view
a horse in willows and
mixtures of air and yearning
motivating it. You can’t cover every base on
every play, but what is the name of that scope coming up
from the bottom?  The whole ball of wax
melts in light of a month’s
wick licked by arrows and a crown
While still young enough you should probably
line up for an elixir, and
bring me one too while you’re at it
Old friends die hard and in the midst
the mountain’s green flies fly to next morning
What comes and goes out on
branch railway lines
A place where comfort steals among a
deadlock of vines
A local fountain of water
The ability to chew what has dried up
Who did you think you were trying to please?
Last chance for a reliable foothold, in a flashback
fading: memory waving her skirt of grass