Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Mark Prudowsky

Not the Face of Diogenes

Last evening, three threads
made one another's acquaintance:

the welder more attracted to iron
than high carbon steel;

the horse whisperer terrified of snakes;

the young alcoholic who for the first four nights
with the woman who’d become his wife, only cuddled—
I have no notion of how to fuck sober.
She showed him.

Yeah, last night, the alcoholic, still married
and ten years later, still welding,
and his host talked about many things,
even horse trainers and then the no longer
drunk one asked his host:

Do you believe in reincarnation?

Maybe the host's eyes and mouth
formed something like contempt for the briefest of moments,
a reflex the host couldn't control,
but the one who no longer drinks
followed with

Do you believe in ANYthing at ALL?

The tone and the look of the one no longer drinking
jerked the host by the scruff of the neck
straight up in his chair,
from where he mumbled something like

sure, then, yeah, we come back as
an atom of iron;
a billionth part of a magnetic field,
attracting, like the ass of a horse
or the ass of its trainer attracts flies;

like you
and the woman who taught you how to love sober.

Nonsensical sure, if you're sober, but after two
shared bowls, and the host's several whiskeys—
a kind of drugged and drunk sense.
And what comes to the host's mind
twelve hours later,
under a heavy fog which the sun will burn off,
is not judgment itself, but how soberly and carefully
one looks at its face
and beneath, to the sinew and muscle that mold it. 


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