In the way the riddled body can appear a pale question mark. It requires a leap
of perspective. Not so
much faith. And here is where you hope
to encounter the back of your mother with her grey hair down to her waist
or your father with his careful lean or whoever
taught you letters whose eyes you imagine
looking away from you
caught up ‘where the sea meets the moon-blanched land’
tearing at the edges of the unframed framed world and a jump cut and a close up
of a blue candle against a black backdrop, an uttering voice-under and a thumb and index
closing the flame. You won’t see
the sliver of smoke, but the afterimage of a lesser darkness
against the darkness appears upon your purple eyelids.
Purple finches racket along the roofline. I can hear the red-tailed hawk with its fan of striped
feathers gliding low. Now I can hear shadows. Of mythology. They sound like syncopated
hammers loitering against the bell
tower. Now a gilded flame. Take me
in. Absence. Mark me
your great sigil. The sheets of paper on the desk fluttering and falling. A foal in a glistening field.
Mark me. I asked you. And I asked you again. I asked you to stop reading the headlines.
‘I’ll give you all the news.’ I repeated. Yo la tengo. I assured. And then
I did not have it all
to give. No sense of it at all. Nonsense until sense begins.
Doo-wop. Doo-wop. My daughter. Is an end and a beginning. Say grace. Say
you cast it all. Into shadow. How great thou art. I change registers for you.
See the bee upon the white daisy and the blurred underbrush. The image desires. Has a will.
Wants to kill time. The bold jumping spider wrapped around the midflight moth
whose stunned wings fold. I read to my daughter from the book of moths. The book
of hidden light. And so she wanted to go to the sky to fetch the moon. She leapt. She climbed
the couch. She toted a ladder. She booked tickets. She declared her estimated time of departure.
And when her small friend said, We can’t go to the sky. G-d is up there.
My seamless daughter offered, So. Maybe we can ask G-d to help.
Daniel Biegelson is the author of the chapbook Only the Borrowed Light (VERSE). He serves as director of the Visiting Writers Series at Northwest Missouri State University and is an editor with The Laurel Review. His work can be found in Cream City Review, Denver Quarterly, DIAGRAM, FIELD and Third Coast among other places.