after practice: right foot
to left foot, stepping forward and back,
to right foot and left foot,
and left foot up to his thigh, holding
A map on which the names have been erased,
A compass pivoting on a black cross,
Sextants dismantled and displayed in a store
Razed and rebuilt in the Jewish Quarter—this is
The screening of the film on genocide,
Designed to build momentum for the final
Lecture at the festival of human rights,
Was marred by the projectionist's refusal
A woman sketching, a man steeped in gin—
Note how the final scene assembling
In the rain shadow of a mountain range
Ablaze from ridge to ridge carries no hint
On the first day the goat climbed to the top branch of the acacia tree and said, The ship sailing to the new world will sink before it leaves the harbor. He stayed there all night, counting the stars in three constellations that he had never seen before, and in the morning he cleaned himself up and said, The fishermen mending their nets will never take to the sea again.
The edifice was complete—the signatures, secret teachings, and sacrificial victims locked in stone, the jewelry, linens, and banners of the vanquished hung from the parapets—when a great wind swept through the city.
When I wake up, I’m still asleep.
And when I get dressed, my clothes are missing.
And when I finish breakfast, I’m always hungry.
And when I walk to school, the street is empty.
How the white horses gallop through the city
At nightfall, when the fog rolls in from the sea
And one by one the street lamps fail to light.
The hammer falls silent, a mourning dove coos in the pigeon house by the olive grove, and in the renovated church the bells ring for vespers