Michael Brennan

(1973 - / Sydney / Australia)

Letter Home - Poem by Michael Brennan

“Ah, good. I was not very sure, finally, of having initiated the conversation myself.”—“But could I have come otherwise?”—“Friendship would have sent you.” He reflects again: “I wrote to you didn’t I?” - Maurice Blanchot

These are strange lands I barely understand.
We are walking in a park of manicured lawns.
The sky is a mosaic of syllables
Parts of a puzzle.

The people here douse themselves in petrol
As though poetry mattered.
Some of the pieces are missing

And the old man tells me we have to make new some new ones.
He looks through me. It matters little if I am here.

In a corner of the park monks are burying elephants.
I found a word under my tongue but swallowed it whole.

The lawn is a lesson in geometry, it imitates
The cast of the concrete walls,

I don’t know if the grass is grey or the concrete grass.
None of it looks like the sky, least of all the sky.

Fashioned out of water, paths no one walks on
Lead into proximity.

The old man spits out tones that sit in pools on the water, Half-oil, half-mercury, he tests them with one foot.

In the distance someone or something catches fire. Perhaps it is the elephants coming into bloom.

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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, May 15, 2012

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