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  • I am slowly, very slowly, because there is so much else to be done, transcribing poems that were soaked in sewer water in bins in the basement that floated, tipped and filled in the latest flood. Some of them were just handwritten drafts. And they are blurred from the long soaking before they were rescued. Because the ink bled into the water, there are sometimes three or four our more poems printed onto a single soggy page. (This is not a photo-shopped layered photo, it is exactly what the pages look like, and many are worse. Many illegible.)

    Here are a couple of my rescues (the sum total so far is 3 and I have to get them printed, which I have not done yet.) (No printer on this computer.)
  • A Brief Tour through Our Shared Mythologies

    You tell me that it is not for pleasure that the gods exist,
    that heaven with its many shining layers rises exponentially
    above these fog-dragged streets. Only longing suggests their desires,
    my earthly yearning, you contend, as a worm moves away from heat
    and pain toward the moldering rot of satiation and delight.
    On the other hand, who says the gods have no tongues
    or fingers? Who says they cannot, in the golden glow
    of all that radiance, caress a breast, pound a table,
    suck the juices from the ripest peach? Statues show us Zeus
    enjoying Europa, but my evidence seems more substantial:
    if in dreams I touch your lips, if your body glistens with moisture
    and is warm to the touch, why not in heaven later?
    Never mind belief or truth, I feel it here with us. Now.


    Mary Stebbins Taitt
    For Keith
    20160723-2110-2nd draft

    this is one of the ones on the cover photo, and was unfinished (and probably still is.) Another from the cover photo was the one I published here the other day.
  • Measuring the Night

    Listen,
    you can hear the earth
    turn.
    One by one, leaves the color of lemon, mustard and ochre,
    some filled with the light of summer, drift through the October night.
    Granite angels, restless in their stone gowns, rustle the leaves
    with disembodied feet.

    Listen,
    you can hear the earth
    turn,
    each revolution
    numbering our days. Sleeping outside in a bitter chill,
    I woke last night to a fat green inchworm walking on my face,
    measuring me, my grandmother always said, measuring me
    for the tomb. I lifted it gently from my skin, set it outside
    my tent to measure the Autumn night as it turned
    toward winter.

    Now,
    minutes slide away
    into purple darkness.
    No more cricket song, no bird song, not even the high and lonesome
    goose song, only the almost whisper
    of a single leaf settling to the ground.
    The granite angels with their arms outstretched
    hold all of autumn in their stony hearts,
    all our dreams in their quiet leaf-filled hands.

    Mary Stebbins Taitt
    20160722-1915-?-? (data currently missing)

    Flood rescue poem
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