I Met Berserk (After Wallace Stevens)

Through the rain
And the lights
I met myself
I met berserk
On the traffic island between fifth and main
“you have so much left to learn” he told me,
Taking hold of the scruff of my neck
And shaking
And shaking

[This is a stub. It echoes three poems: one that I wrote in high school, which was inspired  “Anecdote of the Prince of Peacocks,” by Wallace Stevens; and also The Great Figure, by William Carlos Williams]

Through the Gates, in July, Something Different

you step through three gates of trees
expecting to see something different
and you always do

today, a turkey
almost to the end of the boardwalk
through the swamp, just before

a stream-bed that’s mostly mud
with the one big stone you’ve hopped
a thousand times

where you can glimpse
one of the huge houses
whose owners have been building again

you stop long enough to regard him
and he calls to you, or to
a well-hidden mate, you can’t determine

his gobble uniquely his
and nothing really like
the english word we made for it

Silence, Lost Sisters, Escape

seeking emptiness
and learning not to fear it
we lost our sisters in the forest

now they gather in the back,
their voices shrill and loud
they don’t seem to have aged
but we have

when did we trade the forest
for this dry museum?
where is the way out?

must we exit through the gift shop
or is there another doorway
we have yet to find?