Peter Gizzi, p.3


The balloonist's diary is swirling to the ground in sheets,
in shorts campers sit in a circle weaving gimp,
the dream a civil engineer remembers over a beer,
the dram of currant the ballerina sips at tea,
a woman at the booth counting change.

To work outside the second hand,
this dance "of what the mind can attain,"
of what the mechanic & the philosopher had to say
in a dream of what the poet said to survive
its original orbit come back like balloons
launched in slow motion, silver nitrate,
harmonium in the distance.

Can't you hear that tinkling of ice
create a rhythm of sleep,
a cycle of dust in the attic.
It's time to play "truth or consequences,"
time to pay the piper
in his gray felt blouse & hat.

Travel the chorus of the iris,
no time for teacher & the globe.
The eyes of the puppet were crossed.
I keep a chip of the gravestone for solace,
I got a swatch of the gown.