Drumbeat Thresholds in a Blizzard of Moss

Withering and blossoming in the genome spreads. Where time delivers form unrecountable, the root of heat builds. Holds root in hatching mineral splits, as worm-holed undersoils pour within being in time out to the vanishing point rendered alive, hungry, and focused as the white eye of an aristocrat far back in the picture from old-world Flemish oils. Populations flood their cities in drumhead unison swells. Chemical-soaked topsoil dries in the till. Amendment ends in sub-Sahara spreads, where the shorn and fleeced must rummage through hot wire and volts, where what once appeared to be unending ends.
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In the fast grip of uncertainty maybe we were slow to notice charged engines of mitosis, the cumulonimbus lulls and scarlet-dark greased axles up-hammered by briny mathematics. Where ancient gyres have been wringing their hands, they’ve already been whip-snapping past classical vanishing points in the oils of history. Nothing we’re looking at changes much, if not through a renewable retooling, not without the cosmic axle overturning whole-hog incendiary integers standing in for identity. Rife with built-in pre-existence, maybe cold-water sinks in externalized effects disseminate a tomahawk appeal nevertheless into tearlessness.
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A spark-spitting bleached coral manifest spleen can end up dissatisfied in home-grown mammoth-with-opposites jolts, smoking and gnarled before shoulder-sleek future cries we’ve overheard halfway down in the hog-caked contagious dark. So the aftermath heads off into the gorge behind us, where wind’s sharpening its blades and the highway circles an apple seed. When it’s time to keep going at parabolic speeds, what’s here remains indivisible from the whole. While graveyard punch presses with a blue-fin chance slam down with dumped arsenic ash reaching a valley-floor nerve, naïve beauty lifts a newborn, the naked equator racing around 100s of 1000s of the most vulnerable.
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A thousand vehicles may not equal the exquisite complexity of a horse. The work of a wheel is never done. When seedlings reach a viable height, they begin to sing, and should from that time on be protected along with air. A hard rain falls in the future. Worry about Bangladeshis, and fewer North Americans listen. Mention the sub-Sahara, and the documentary fades. A medieval courtyard comes into view, where the queen is about to appear. Beauty in the genome protected by long-term learning follows her. Who hasn’t been under her protection? Who hasn’t imprinted on quick wing-beat hope? Who doesn’t own the forests as a consequence of birth opening her eyes?
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The same circulating global air that ritually masked antiquity defies the unobtainable. Long spins rounded out of affinity continue to imprint on the wilderness of Roman numerals steadily losing its animals. As calving melts swim into unbridled depths, collective intransigence remains unfinished and defenseless as swallowing in the small houses of sleep. Where what could become of us we could become, where kindness expands after the war, palatial belongings settle down lightning-first into harsh parallels of impermanence. Where desire’s seen a top commodity, assumptions have left their out-worn apparatus, declaring it a resource necessary for growth. What appears to be growing with no end in sight has many thinking Earth is where life never ends.
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Acidified-fjord under-the-foundation drill pressures top pretty-nice-day look-out-below saddening exacerbated by as-we-sit-here imbeciles crowing a swan song for attention, us grimacing idiots trained only for engine rooms of not saying much that makes you more enthused than transnational sexuality in implied continuing NASA, NOAA, EPA, IPCC, where you don’t need to be a scientist to learn what may be shaping up, and therefore at stake for happiness to control this ice-melt carbonic for-I-have-sinned swimming-impoverishment knocking upside-the-biomaterial-flues as the owls hoot in the remote ice-capped territory of unprecedented human endeavor. Drum-beat thresholds in the present abound. Suffering wants flare up. as sunlight comes through broken and whole.
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The planetary core spins on shading of a feather. Hungers unfold from archaic states of fluorescence in which centuries go down fast. The silence designating conscious borders brings more global impoverishment and medieval impregnation. Synaptic operations touch as unconditional animals aware of what they’re doing before words. From drivers’ seats bearing ancestral intent have surround-sound tests of the climate been using an elbow out the window. Blood-seeing traverses space between eyes of animals at the outskirts, when what rolls through the galaxy is desire, the desire for a little more—how do you say?—solidness in the face of fluid molecular bonds.
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Unassisted eyes fall short, as facts on the ground assemble at unknown chemical speeds. The extra-temporal exists in living indivisibility that humbles current definitions of self. The hour grows into a long time from one outbreak of hunger to the next. It turns out intentional ignorance almost feels like belief. A few dead bolts on fire doors may not have purposes other than shielding a child from burning shame or frozen hope. The vast experiment of the cells makes us a few billion hammers pounding in the massive coliseum of ideas. Old-growth trees voting in absentia raise security levels that fall through the spectrum of being, as what never happens rocks on its wild galactic wave.
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Each person who steps through the door makes the bell ring. Being revises the whole. Each person arrives in a burst. A few kids stomp off snow, or race ahead as the bell swings, going to town. The door shows up with a person drawn in by buttery light or scent of bread, the promise of pumpkin or words. A person is part of being, as being is presence expressed. The door opens as little kids pray, aurora borealis swirling at blood-brain barriers, old fathers carrying torches down the dark road. As sleep drops into dreaming the self awake, it’s clear what animals mean to cells. The bell goes off, the mind’s invested, and what works by dreaming has scripts playing. When all you want is to have a life, you borrow what’s given, as people step through the door.
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A greater invention than large or small has already whispered fiercely. Long-standing ache grows amber-gold wheat, as moths have opened their wings into manuals of dust far from want. Single-winged halibut swim through imperative, where the usual road goes off, leaving everyone in Rouault outline. With means of production returned to local hands, climate disruption leaves fewer harmed. Aching in the spectrum spreads through unforeseen thermals and cottonwoods smoldering with rain. Nothing to see here is tacked up around peace vigils at the front, with pallets of culturally activated incendiary devices aching the mind alive.
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All day the sky’s seen and yet not. The void lobs lightning into the gene pool, soaked with prairie protocol. Urgency swerves into the turn until it’s a few feet from the door, its Hummer revved in neutral, the faceless driver about to shift into drive. Is this a neighborhood where the mind wants to see what it knows? A man in a bomber jacket sinks his silhouette into the café window of the “Hymn to Joy,” part of him back in the sub-Sahara burning oil or talking on phones about effects of the drought. Isn’t that tree a blizzard of moss? Is the forest stored within seed? Wouldn’t this be the spring meadow unremembered fast in a drop of rain?
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What may be within us, simple as we are, what could go wrong, contending with basic hot and cold, practicing for yellow-gold dawn in longing, in long-falling rain, where the species is, living larger than necessary out of this anomalous and effortless heart-beat in an instant, around oyster-lit Neolithic snail spindles of laboring repast within the wild sweet Sitka unfinished hour through state-of-the-art current silence, at resounding conscious borders of bone down rock of the horizon and rare birth you were ready to inhabit in your time, in a burst of what cells know is a wide-open, very quick time.

 

James Grabill

About James Grabill

James Grabill’s poems have appeared in numerous periodicals such as The Oxonian Review (UK), Stand (UK), Magma (UK), Toronto Quarterly (CAN), Harvard Review (US), Terrain (US), Seneca Review (US), Urthona (UK), kayak (US), Plumwood Mountain (AUS), Caliban (US), Spittoon (US), Weber: The Contemporary West (US), The Common Review (US), and Buddhist Poetry Review (US). His books include Poem Rising Out of the James Grabill’s recent work is online at the Buddhist Poetry Review, Harvard Review, Terrain, Urthona (UK), Shenandoah, The Oxonian Review (UK), Stand (UK), East West Journal, The Common Review, Toronto Quarterly, Elohi Gadugi, Oxonian Review (UK), Plumwood Mountain (AUS), Caliban, Spittoon, Weber: The Contemporary West, and many others. His books include Poem Rising Out of the Earth (1994) and An Indigo Scent after the Rain (2003), both from Lynx House Press. Wordcraft of Oregon has published his new project of environmental prose poems, Sea-Level Nerve: Book One, 2014 (available online -http://www.0s-1s.com/poetry-shelves/sea-level-nerve), Book Two, 2015 (now available). A long-time Oregon resident, he teaches 'systems thinking' and global issues relative to sustainability.
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