'Poem Ending With Some Advice' and Three More by Heather Christle

I want to live in the rectangle          it lights
me up     I swear       it is the nothing I have
never seen before           reject this weather
I said to myself             and fucked it out of
existence       thank you for coming     I am
happy to see you          it is nice to see you
from across the prophylactic lake     here is
my advice                  if you want to make a
commercial            about two tortoises with
internet trouble      their house should be a
one-story ranch         if you want people to
you know     believe you

               SPRING POEM FOR HARPO
if we did not have skin we would not have
gladness                    skin is what keeps the
gladness in      you know you are glad when
the skin begins swelling       you can almost
not contain it             the gladness          the
feeling when you touch a warm stone with

all five of your toes             then the others
the sun will one day grow      so glad it will
destroy us         our skin           an immense
gladness will go all over           all humming
like it is a farmer             to dwell upon this
planet is a radical consolation       already I
am swelling up           like a berry          not
smartly       in a two foot patch of         look
no snow

I don’t need anything     but you and some
light            the world goes on        getting
inferred      it is so stubborn    and will not
erase things     I think I should rub out my
eyes      you will recognize me still    won’t
you     I am much older now      older than
I’ll ever be          all these eyes in my head
and the light    what distinguishes my face
from a tree                    is the total lack of
commentary         as in that tree loves you
honestly loves you          I’m the noisy one
who has to say it


this room         without which I would shoot
into space     is useful      calms me      your
face is a room       I am resting in it      later
refreshed            I will walk out your mouth
this vase has room for only one flower      I
am an unruly bundle    a flip makes a room
it disappears when not in use      no     I am
not using it      yes      I do think you should

Heather Christle is the author of two books of poems, The Difficult Farm (Octopus 2009), and The Trees The Trees (Octopus 2011), as well as a chapbook, The Seaside! (Minutes Books 2010). She teaches poetry at Emory University, where she is a Creative Writing Fellow.

You may contact the editor of The Poetry Section at poems@theawl.com.

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