The Cozy-Keeper; After Nemerov; 3:00 AM
By: Julie Benesh
stains the burnished twilight fuschia,
settling catlike on the warming lap
pressing fascia to bone, and bone to fascia,
brings gravitas to rest and rest to gravitas.
The cozy-keeper brews the warm elixir;
tea lights twinkle; unassuming
jewel tones spark festive feel, sans
frenetic force. Flows fragrant frankincense
as pulse and thoughts slow and strengthen,
brighten shadows, deepen depth.
The cozy-keeper rules the shifting shoulder
seasons: sweater weather, Halloween, Thanksgiving,
pumpkin spice! Presides on every rainy Sunday; that empty
space between the Solstice and New Year.
When moods are liminal, she is here.
The cozy-keeper spurs melodic memoirs: reveries,
dreams, reflections merge, diffuse—erasing
all temptation toward regret:
all now is to absorb, absolve, digest.
Her props: 1) tapestry 2) mirror, 3) mantle, 4) hearth,
5) lamplight, and 6) the cartoon clock whose whipping
hands now slow to stopping, until
O, miracle of cozy-keeping!
we, now timeless,
cease our fear
of dark and death.
After `Thomas Lux’s “The Joy-Bringer”
St. Howard would float down Lindell,
sink on Skinker, inches above the ground;
beaming dreamy, feeling groovy, like a mirror
blessing our youthful union. We called
him Uncle: it was all about us.
Write what you know. That should leave
you with a lot of free time.
We didn't know anything but the warm give
of our bodies; their sweet, swelling
scent. I tried to write poems
A lot happens by accident in poetry
that journal they made fun
of, the one that took everyone
would not take me, so cursed
was I by joy.
I have a plot, but not much happens.
We didn't know
those years were but
a short break
Not the end.
I sometimes talk about the making
of a poem within the poem:
A bird's nest of dreams, detritus fused
with snot, tears; all that assorted effluvia.
It's not much, is it? But
I love all my children even the squat,
sacred enough for me now, the knowing, broken
Auntie beaming blessings of her own.
Woke mid-poem: cool, clammy; dry mouth,
full bladder; burritoed in bedding,
thinking: constraint in art is called
form; holds substance together,
a working within. Whereas
growing up with an alcoholic
is a workaround: a dream
shanty incubating a future
that jumps genre. And
work is a body: ingesting, pulsing, pumping.
An open system evolving new-ish output every day: