Saturday, February 12, 2011

haunted house

Every time a child stares into a mirror,
she is making a deposit. A piece of spirit
gets hung on the silvered plane to wait.
It coils into itself going deeper into glass.
It is a dangerous thing in childhood
to leave a shard to hang and twist
into a dreaming on the surface.

Something similar happens when shadows roam.
Those shrugs from light can move into young eyes,
when objects cast their dark, unnameable affects.

No one knows why light is real.
No child should stare into a shadow.
Those sighs of forms can intoxicate
with opium moods of consequence.

No! Instead she should touch her toys, her dolls
and by touching make a solid contract with life,
allow mimesis and the taffy flavors pulled of time
to take her into the slow carnival of proper days.

She must early on shake off spirits,
which glide amid cascading dust motes
or recline full of morning significance
in the dull gleams of polished furniture.

She must move cautiously past the grandfather clock,
and even the mirror's frame requires a cross-fingered hex.

Vagrant aromas are mixed with other substances
not of Earth, not of anything with a name or sign.
The child when she breathes must exhale bravely
or toxins will brood into many dreams of the night.
And she will wake up one day a half-mad poet.

If you wish your child to be woven into strong threads,
don't leave her alone with mirrors, shadows, and aromas.


  1. This is a grand poem. How did I miss this?

    1. I'd forgotten about this poem. I'm glad you found it and liked it.

    2. It immediately transports me to a certain space, that is, dissolves certain veils and illusions, and opens a portal. I love it!