And So
Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge?
Where is the knowledge we have lost in information? — T.S. Eliot

Dust motes spin, the most solid thing in your cold apartment;
the cold phone tethers afternoon to evening. Out back,
hollows hidden in the red soil hold copses of stunted trees,
here and there a nest, a starling. The wind blows
your lungs' dark tar down the river, bleaches bones
in the hollow to polished bundles. Copse— what a lovely word,
even with the tinge of corpse. People used to know
the names of trees, of birds. Now we name our machines.
But God bless Google; central heating; the ability
to have ice picks and duct tape delivered to my door
without having to talk to anyone. And so at the correct hour
we see the bus approaching, and so you chip your nail polish off
on the bus. The miles between you and wherever you might go.
And so the trees crack like guns, guns singing
in the throat of the cormorant, unspooling like
the ribbon of each winter. The guns lain down
in the roots, rotting. And so you're gunning for
something that hasn't yet come—or did
a long time ago, but you forgot. And so in winter
we wait for the spring, as for the mail. And so we know
fall will follow, fallow. It seemed to us
that we were a very great people. It seemed to us
we knew, but the more we knew, the less we knew.
How to name what is in the air? Bruises the blue
of snowstorms. How to see the bruised lamps
inside your lungs, the breath inside the breath?
Anywhere you run, the wind runs before you.
It carries fire, poppy seeds, the dark shapes
of birds, turning. And so we are furred, finned,
wedded bone to floating bone.

Nina Puro's work has appeared or is forthcoming in Third Coast, Pleiades, Harpur Palate and other publications. She is bad at thinking of clever things to put in places like this. She lives and works in Syracuse, NY. She sort of likes it here, oddly, but she is moving somewhere else soon.

Boxcar Poetry Review - ISSN 1931-1761