sporklet 14

Joshua Wilkerson

slow life

summers are set aside for teutonic circling. even though I know the sentence is a line, it’s thin in the middle and easy to loop. in a language a phase of the sun and I invented, it was wenderdas, a sliver of day between two german genders. not that days can be invented—just new pictures for old timeframes. nonetheless, on wenderdas, the margins reset. I become grim, and plans begin to circle back. away with periods, lawns—I want commas, starlings—I leer at a stranger’s ruined watch, grasping for its tomorrow, dotting my open sky.

orphan’s lament

a chemical veil grays the park. this kite too streaming headless in the branches. what should I know? who’ll punish me if I don’t? what if the figures I thought were automatons were abandoned here, and don’t know what to do? for thirty seconds another plane with its inner wind. they’ll have to pick themselves up and feign some purpose, fearing discovery. no, I would say it’s more an abandonment habit. but that’s how thought works, isn’t it? diffusion, rivulets, middles. what do you mean sir, of course I don’t find your dog sexy; or would that draw more suspicion? or is that a nudge toward closure? would you just dog my ear like a paperback, dusty ochre, fog on the nightstand, all the daylight left for words? 

used furniture store

how many hands my idleness rests on, the platform assembled by so many hands. hive of grubby fingers placed each brick of my thoughts. & my thrashing about is both mine and an appendage, slender threshing claw or knotted finger. my idleness follows the gnarl of this table, blinking with the same wet black eye of the woman I saw at the reading. the way species flickers as my bus idles & exhaust knots from mufflers across the city then the light turns and we are not untangled. or when we saw a couple across the platform with our bad stoops, or when across december we wilt & bruise, taxonomical rhythm. the crunch of snow beneath my poems, the bones of healthy hands, just writing your tumorous stumps of delirious color.

Joshua Wilkerson is an adjunct at Brooklyn College and edits poetry & visual art for the Brooklyn Review. His recent work can be found or is forthcoming from Dream Pop Journal, Afternoon Visitor, Otoliths, Gone Lawn, and others.