have you never loved & suffered?


Hobo crawled out of a hollow log
like a moon-bear from hibernation.
The River held him in suspension
between breaths, heartbeats (in a fog).

Have you never loved & suffered, Henry?
Do you comprehend soul-agony?
He was a Man of Sorrows, he –
acquainted with grief – like a lost penny

(Lincoln?) at the bottom of a well.
I have, Hobo.
If you want to know
I too be tarnished imago, two steps from hell.

Like who.  But I carry this flashlight
handed me by Lightning
Littletree one morning
(way back, in Providence).  It all right.

Or going to.  Everything you see
is a fresco-dream,
June-bug – the triple beam
searchlights all round (Imogen Dovie

in your mind).  I see you grinning,
Beatrice.  Bunny Rabbi
and Ignatz O’Lamb, too (hi).

will it spin in the sky?  Little Bear,
Big Bear?  In a sloppy gyre
you may bespiral somewhere
sometime, Hobo... in your underwear?

King David hopped like a rabbi
alongside the canoe.  Micòl
was like... O well.
The pure fire is restoration, Jun-eye.



call him Halfway Hank


Hobo staggers along the riverbank
halfway between Henry
& Osiris (bury-
man).  Call him Halfway Hank.

Like Bluejay all out of mummer’s tricks
memories of a Myth America
detach from his hat (ha-ha,
caw-caw).  Tall Tale of Two-Sticks

maybe – or The Time We Had a Picnic.
Nostalgia for infinity
invokes our Plenty-
Big-Prairie; mysterieux Henri Pick

was anonymous, along with Alexander P.
These meadowlands are Russian.
Thunder’s Oblomovian this
afternoon (American iz you & me).

So memory would like to dab a fresco
containing a continent.
As when a canoe is bent
around a bough of yew, or spent willow...

in some fictional garage in Ferrara
where recent immigrants
gather for sustenance
like Jonah huddled in a whale’s cantina

& the eye in your hand opens like a tear
& the river streams into the Gulf
where Wolfram & Beowulf
celebrate Thanksgiving (more Grail? – here).



upon St. Swithin's Day


‘Tis hot & muggy in the octagon
upon St. Swithin’s Day.
& will it rain?  Say.
St. Emperor Henry’s (Holy Roman)

also, once upon a time.  It’s stifling.
An unreal toad usurps
the garden throne, & burps.
His orange tongue is mean, & trifling;

his fire-red refuge-chair is for a child
who hasn’t come home
in 33 years.  Christendom
conquered the Holy Sepulchre... wild

slaughter & rejoicing on this day,
1099.  But will his Ghost
lift from that gloomy host?
Joachim daubs a fingerpaint contrary

blindly, with bare feet (a cave-fresco
for San Francisco).  & Henry
plots his own obscure & minatory
figure : double wheels.  Of milky glow

& river-clay – Cahokia, North Star.
To turn the Great Year
5 29s... & spin from here
some monarch milk (a little almond to restore).



for washing Washington


Before you can enter the realm of God
you must imagine it
& you can’t imagine it
until you turn & become a little child

again.  As a red-black monarch
dances over a mauve
milkweed cluster, like a hive
of honey – so the Ghost in her Ark

skims with light shadow wings
through unconscious nature,
& lifts, here & there
the heavy hearts of human beings.

Grace Truth is her name; Liberty
her gift; & the joy
that shines like equality
throughout the cosmos sets you free.

The Ghost courses through human veins
like shade of a rose,
like a prism of rainbows –
wherever Imago walks, listens, leans...

Like a Mississippi made of murmurs
or a clay flute molded
out of golden moss,
the Ghost in us surges toward a chorus –

a waterfall of sound, for washing
Washington – bringing
Vierge-Astraea, singing
from the Delta (milky monarch thing).



otherness of the Someone


Her fingers fondled Red Wing clay
on the circling wheel
into Northwoods bowl
or Mexican flowerpot.  Wheels, say,

within wheels... microcosmic canoes,
Arks of the Covenant...
even Charon’s punt,
Henry (we who have passed

over Lethe).  The woman with child
in her apocalyptic
mandorla, chased by Dick
the Drag to the edge of the wild

(up north, near the Boundary Waters,
in the Iron Range, near
Itasca).  Fresco a veneer
across Ravenna beams – Jordan River’s

sleepy patron god.  Sort of like Hobo
witnessing the fire-dove
skim down Cottonwood Cove
& settle on the shepherd kid... just so...

but I just don’t know.
Iconoclasm sets in,
considering we’re human –
liable to make it up as we go.

The otherness of the Someone.
Your friend, your judge
(merciful – but won’t budge,
won’t fudge the facts).  Solomon

petitioned humbly for wisdom,
sensing the dire burden
beyond each king’s ken :
the destiny of Jerusalem


under a blood moon of violent men
& the everyday mayhem
the grinding paroxysm
of atrocious cruelties – shifting pain

to the weak (convenient scapegoat,
ordinary poor).
Even blindfold Synagoga
might remember something critical, something

our mosaic Pantocrator forgot.
A little gray-brown moth
settles on Hobo’s mouth,
like a fingertip.  Hush, seraph.  That

maybe we are Hagia Sophia
with a million eyes.
Solomon was wise
to be humble before the Shekinah.

& Hobo was a mumbling bumbler
more like a river than a man
more like clay than person.
& Thunderbird was a rumbler

in Red Wing, churning the rusted wheel
until it sparked like gold;
helping her to fold
the wet clay of America on steel

braces... evenly rotating... Source
to Delta... Sea-Rose
to Golden Gate... flows
through the arch... Mud-Morse...



mark how red dust leaps


The trickster-shaman & the prickly prophet
frame a stumbling-block
you can’t dislodge... mock
as you may, puffy lectern-puppet.

It is a fundamental moral world
they dramatize, a place
of breathing flames – their science
is conscience, this life a dream unfurled

on stage (his banner over me was love).
On board a fellowship
from birth, we skip, we slip
& slide toward the deep (sky-alcove,

ocean-sepulchre... Osiris-canoe
full of Isis-candles... grave
of MLK, our architrave).
As if returning to our own soul (true).

In West Branch, Iowa (my grandmother’s
home town) there is a dark
moss-green catafalque
of Isis, adamant earth-mother (who remembers).

& the North Star of the martyrs shines
like a seminal spark
over the Iron Range.  Mark
how red dust leaps into lifelines –

how a merry-go-round of American clay
swings toward the gateway ring
upstream, down.  Shaping
newborn, translated children – maize, hay hey.



all the unspoken waltzing things


Henry has his scribbly hobbies.
Hobo is obsessed.
Osiris in his nest
buried (maybe touches the Keys).

A Viking ship in Minnesota
sleeps near Lake Itasca
like a Moses-mandorla
or canoe (garaged in Ferrara);

a pregnant Virgo by Francesca
curves in an oval
like a miniature whale.
These fish are scaled to hallelujah

& back – one swallow swallowing
a smaller, swifter swallow –
& water seems shallow
until you measure it (by hollowing

a sea-grave in the Milky Way).
& so Jonah yodels,
while Akhmatova spells
lowly on an ocarina (hey ey

yo).  A warbling robin sings
out of Mississippi clay
her infinite wedding day –
all the unspoken waltzing things

logrolling like a planet made of grace
in a dream-songe dream, Henri.
Near that Melusina-sea
glistens in memory (her San Fran face).