by Greg Baysans

Poet X

September Cut-up

I don't want to recall recoiling in pain stomach punched
in buses winter mornings to the prairie school dream
wherein we floated. A messenger brought news of release
soon ahead, and the surface of the water had snakes
("amphibia" in the dream language) floating past.
"Are they dead?" "All but one, as it's supposed to be," and
just then the live one skimmed by and struck me.
With my reptilian eyes (which one has pyramids?) and from
the balcony twenty-four floors up, I see pictures of me
who ages and and pictures of me age too. You can also use
three things I learned from him. Occupation: singing harmony
forever, dawn to death atop one's thick lungs, familiar as nostalgia
with friends. I don't like fighting and don't want to remember that
winter afternoon the owl-young old short thin black man I gave
a cigarette fifteen minutes ago (4:30 a.m.) on the public lawn
and a block away I see a man, young in tie and jacket swinging,
screaming harmony. Every utterance and creation knows these:
a journey, a dream, colloquialism, a sea and salt and bittersweet
drowning, fire, rhyme, a love interest, cluttered rooms.
The mating of dogs is violent. Blood blood hot water. I don't
remember playing tent with neighbors and things were never 
the same words equal poetry but now constitute mush. The flow
is dependent on (Why invite? accept?) dissonance. Don't look
don't touch I don't want to recall this century sags its head,
words from the heart of the cliff laymen laid into this relic road

red and green and brown and rust. I'm here to descry, admire
these things worthy of paeons, deserving eulogies better, unavoidable
autobiography. Tongue sex atingle, the eyes of the knees weak.
But overhead bombers from the Air Force Base, a real place in
a schizo world, schizo times. In star-filled water, I had no raft.