HOLE, CAVE, TUNNEL, JAIL
With thaw, everything changes at once. As if in danger
of suggesting: panoramic hindsight. Our habits of language
make us overlook other kinds of rupture. Unless it be
tedium, all more muted. I chose to remain upon the crest
of a wave for so long. For you, time corresponds. A dense
and sparse array coordinates your observations at stake.
Leoline, climacteric, unhistorical, this is a terminal moment.
Two distinct velocities: appetite and repletion, pleasure
and revulsion. Don’t feel obliged to follow the rules.
LAY OF THE LAND
Sun shot gut shot
lull, lilt, loll more than rumor.
“I need a safe place
to keep the wire cutters.”
We have met in a church
in the mountain’s echo.
Pressed together like
flour and water. We
have met before. Tufted
as trophies, the monarch
departed with shame.
His right, a helm. Mine,
a matter of faith. I look
fixedly to raise the dust
and fumble on the way.
Debt is all around, I’m dizzy
and lightminded. I run my finger
over the key.
SEEDS & EGGS
Patient settlement, what shape
things are doesn’t matter. Trees
planted in the shape of battles.
Dividing night from day, more
than buildings, it’s like watching
animals. Not pilots. A derelict
remnant is full of old lives, a flood
plain: subject, object, black-fly swarm
and statue. It is the morning of the equinox
and like her mistress pined flat
the bones were sold to passing tourists.
A subterranean honeycomb kept
by days wears it course like a curse
and still tremoring, the echo sounds
them hollow now. Little gunmetal
like a noonday moon, turn against
oneself and listen.
Katy Chrisler received her MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and has held residencies with Land Arts of the American West and 100 West Corsicana. Recent work of hers has appeared or is forthcoming in Tin House, Octopus Magazine, The Volta, and The Seattle Review. She currently lives and works in Austin, Texas.