The United States 2
The United States 2
2. I promised the gun shape of Oklahoma I would write this poem
if it stayed right there, quiet, all summer. It did
so I did.
2. West Virginia doesn’t deserve this: to be out here, bullied by these big rectangular desert states.
To have its valleys sketched by memory by the clouds, awkward anvil heads
that may or may not shape rain.
2. Hawaska: something borrowed.
Alaii: something blue.
2. Which national razor is the most photogenic? The western edge of Arizona
or the eastern edge of Iraq?
2. You’ll understand too late the whole point, the hypotenuse of a two-buzzard-and-you triangle.
You’ll wonder how it came to be
you paid the Navajo Nation three bucks to be in four states at once.
2. Why do I keep taking perfectly good electricity and running it through squiggles? It would be
easier for I-40 to pass through Carmel instead of Needles
than for me to leave sprawl out of my sense of heaven.
If you lose a fingernail it will grow back
anywhere on earth
in any size
its little white moon
That crease you’ve been feeling
is your ear.
If you lose a Matisse
within the masterpiece of whatever else
there is within 30 sec
there’s an effortless
in the Tokyo
how to be a coincidence
to someone far away.
A wedding invitation arrives
during the course of an email
A bird has been found
down by the lake, surrounded
by its stomach
its stomach surrounded by rice that was dutifully thrown
not far enough
If you were meant to make someone in another country
with something you write
this little moth
two tin cans might be
battering away the instructions
is Remembering Part 1
Joe Lennon has visited all the US states that touch other ones, and none of the ones that don't. When he was nine his hometown newspaper published a poem he had written which included the line "and throw in Nancy Reagan's hair." Since then he's been traveling and writing. Right now he studies and teaches poetry at the University of Denver.