Tony Towle

††††††††††† Another Zone (Prelude)



In the end you take off from your former world,

the rambunctious wings folded in for the day,

the smoky air settling down over the brushwork,

the whole treated to my casual but gregarious inaccuracies,

with imperfections for the entire family:

the reviewers and the reviewed,

the editors and the edited, all the wretched of the earth

at its flattest, the wretched page,

which has now ripened, ever so slightly,

into the details of time and place, land and sea,

brightly seductive, or somber, ill-lit, and grave

and looking for a few more good words

to fill out the diminishing weeks,

the weekly reversals of the Christian tradition:

coming alive on Friday and dying on Sunday

against a background of lawns and coffeepots, steaks and spaniels,

which was nothing like the original cartoon,

once you clean off the dirt with some turp,

which was of a moose chasing a kind of weasel with a two-by-four,

or something,

but anyway the merest sketch

when a thickly crowded panorama

pushing across the bridge of evolution

would have done just as well;

but Iím going back upstairs

and look out the window of America,

which I thought somebody was supposed to clean once in a while,

not that it would change the view:

pastel sunset landscapes sinking into the western foam,

where I would fly like a common bird

and get away from the Cask-of-Amontillado number

the buildings in architectural agglomerations

pull on you here in Downtown New York;

but no island is an island

if you duck your head far enough beneath the waves

and observe the microscopic connections

and listen to the complaints of the sunken travelers,

their obscured vocabulary standing out from the rest of the bullshit,

and we obtusely concentrate on the former

when the latter would do just as well.

I too saw this day a pretty street

and I scrape the clarion layers of paint from the walls

and find stationary shadows on the layers beneath;

itís one more scenario Iíve got to think up feelings for

at some point ó but a snail with a limp could go faster than this,

and since I no longer have so much time

thatís all for the prose. For poetry

the dawn comes up and I make some more coffee,

and it awakens me to the whispering

of yet ten more turbulent years,

and I drink the coffee

and wait for someone to believe me,

the rain not yet having reached the ground,

and I jump toward the sun

that still reaches to this moment,

the sun the same messenger, Guillaume Apollinaire,

itís all still the same, August 26, 1989.

from Some Musical Episodes

Copyright © 2008 by Tony Towle. All rights reserved. Copyright © 2008 by Tony Towle. All rights reserved.