IN THE WAKE OF FALLEN MOUNTAINS
Lincoln, Owl's Head,
Fertile evergreens, (plant names, florae, .) and blindingly thick.
[things to do and done:]
No more subject matter for Thomas Cole,
if they ever came to these parts at all.
Daily the mirror commissions me when it gets the chance.
Tidal lines fanning from my eyes,
skin complexion like a moving field of wheat,
sturdy hue of tawn dotted
with the small stamens of wheat-bulbs.
So many landscapes
Learn to forget them
and start tilling your face
for a sunflower patch
The world is now breathing full with its emptiness
broadened horizons, clearer sightlines.
Up in the once, there. Look, Dogen.
He and I sip coffee outside a tent and scan the not-there.
Do not travel far to other dusty lands, forsaking your own sitting place;
if you cannot find truth where you are you are fucked
cliffrock, granite, metasiltstones, phyllite, gabbro,
Names so full yet empty of truth.
Rock is slick and a killing instrument.
The walk to her home in my sleep, and every night.
The way is empty, yet use will not drain it.
So each night, the empty dreams fill me
and I continue walking, entering the dust.
Ethan Paquin is an Assistant Professor of Humanities at Medaille College in Buffalo, where he edits Slope and Slope Editions. His first book, The Makeshift, was recently released in the U.K. by Stride Books.