The Idea of Beauty (Spoke Itself) (from Sledgehammer, 2000, poems from old notebooks)

This poem pleased me immensely the day I wrote it, which would have been in August or September of ’98 or ’99 (I could haul out my notebooks to check, but I’m too lazy at the momemt), and it still does. Except for all the ampersands—jesus, what was I thinking?

The Idea of Beauty (Spoke Itself) (from Sledgehammer, 2000)

I have been waiting here for you since
the stars first leapt into the sky
since before there was water sprung from fresh rock
(its first & longest music a metronome—
beat after unvaried beat falling like hammers of zombied blacksmiths)

I have been waiting here where
there were no flowers & the rocks were sharp
the soil odorless & dense,
no air pockets, no tunnels of worms winding
under roots of grass

I have waited here as minerals & salts turned to algae & coral
in the factory din of water & wind
as the assembly-line sun flung super-cooled windsurfing dimetrodons
among giant treeferns & monochrome blossoms,
as prototype blood shifted towards red & DNA began its fall
from beautiful flux into fixity and self-replication

I have waited here glacially for you
as the whispery respiration of trees built air
while whole forests fell into peat bogs, became stones
while the beaded sweat of ancient lives accreted into diamonds
& the idea of beauty spoke itself in the lush green syllables of your eyes

About John MacKenzie

I'll mumble for ya. Poetry, plus most things quantifiable: science, neuroscience, memory, epistemology, baseball. And so on.
This entry was posted in Art is lies, Epistemology, Evolution, Geology, John MacKenzie, Language, Poem tweets, Poems from old notebooks, Poetry, Science, Sledgehammer, Time and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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