Spring 2014, Volume 16

Poetry by Ally Harris

Angles of Swarm

On pocked gravel, Taryn froths. BM breaks the bong. We laugh, sky up, & I exit the cornfield plus a couple hair-sticks. Ladies under red umbrellas trickle and gust. I slap the mud. I loose voice over the terrain. I become the white stone in my pocket, smooth as the moon, a rare laughing cloud.


People infer language from hands behind the back, stamped into the sheen of a weekend garden, made of glass. Parents say they’ll be gone for just a couple hours. The children know meaning, but the lie deflates them into empty stuff sacks at the foot of the TV. Then: my arrival on the yellowy square. The rotting dog drank from the pure water out of a lazy hose my dziedek held in his liver-spotted hand. I carry my sack of books into the house, planning to drown word and sound by sating. We move because of death but also because a man followed me to the bodega one morning, trying to get me to look at his cock.


Remember: the green graced chill of sway, them to wind & a pulse of green like stalk and blue like the impossible rolling of a cigarette because the paper thickness has been decreasing and decreasing until you’re holding nothing, an okay between two fingers aimed at what I dream.


I cannot recall the moment after they took the painting off the wall, for I wasn’t there, for I am not meant to see what’s underneath. Yet perhaps behind the painting is a lake, under which the setting sun begets a train yard. I climb up the highest trestle to achieve the status breeze. In far rye, a latch shone in this lucid nation’s shod deck of memory, descent from thawed snow. Debt built into the thatched green, and the anemone of air defers to a boar of wakening silt.


Bathroom stall door, color of stalk. The park tiles yellow but I climbed the stall and swung my legs to hide breakthrough/forest/the ability to cope by friction and metro is the place/ to find out what is breaking the table you rocked like a rocking horse under /foliage/the folded edge/syncopated/New York wooded edge/Christ/is a myth by the Rockaway avenue nightblast. Fawning trickle


Then/flushed, the muted lake, geese forged in with whiteout. From above the creek’s concrete bridge/my fortune told me I am naked and only to cross the bridge with the sine curve glow of a cell phone. Have you eaten from the tree of life is a Game/these are the rules/ that govern/ what governs life is the way the world ends


A flutter: it wasn’t so much the earth floating as it was the seed of an avocado propped inside the fruit. Pure gamelans, no marigold. Every star birthed round it blue, night blue, like the kind during a preconception/misconception/black branch obstructing your view on a night with a smudge of star stuck translucent, breeding out light like Lite Bright.


I am in the car, I am a pulsing muscle, a song quickened, a nerve that flinched, I am a closed eye, an opening fruit. I see wife’s face in a nondescript Toyota. Nobody asked, do you feel strange. Why should they? The moon appears as a siphon. It lets its long curl down for me to suck. The child reaches with broken glass to tear into the image, and the wood and fly drink with vigor into night’s abnormal fire. I sit forced aft in tie, write etcetera over moment’s matter, stale with stuck gnats on PA air.

In Tougher Blue

                         lake fills the theater. The youngest frilled girls, doll-dressed, caress the sticky-velvety seats with their ultrabald heads, their black space flush with patience. Before I contort for you, wet in this shower theory, I see me in mirror form. Each doe-eyed & taffeta-balmed straggler under my arm like a football, clear cool water on my ungarbed foot.

Then grew nude, the ether color. And gauged in soft wind, scene hid, hair skulking down the drain. All red accrued as dark widened & hocking off the slats. Dark sang through inundated fibers, virtual ululation, dousing the ornament sex to the ceiling for art. In watery sound a huge maker, dressed in bone, hammers through static. The quiet extends from an earlier death, laid in sleek handles of ribbon. Grafted into space: constellation death orchid. Slow conversion. A counterfeit rehearsal.

Yaw Aft Mine

My slow eye up on her animalic ankle. Her jackknife dress, her automatic frill. She pauses under the raceway, a low-car purr in the frame-stiff night. O poor slid-blonde vehicle of the answer to hunker come only to wash in manner that standard Aqua Net autumn-awkward chill, as our dress falls over our head, as our shadow overtakes us.




BIO: Despite being functionally useless, Ally Harris' poetry has appeared in or is forthcoming from Agriculture Reader, Anti-, Bayou, CutBank, Tarpaulin Sky, inter|rupture, Sixth Finch, and more. She has a new chapbook of poetry forthcoming from Slim Princess Holdings sometime in spring 2014 with a still tentative title, and she earned her MFA in Poetry from the Iowa Writer's Workshop.