:: Article

Three Poems

By Ray Succre.


Haste is formed in mud, beneath it, is atop me
and devolved from my father. Halt. Hail.
Rend and rake: Oboe worms in low notes
tunnel, settle into skin-sleet iterations—
I’d give an eye that no note of it go lost long enough,
sound of lasting, beating more than an eye
can witness; death is in the ears, the winnowing
of music, poetry, machine clogging whirs
in appendages too obscure, filling the canals
as from a sweating, then crumbling dam…
Now I see my own father is washed under,
and this daunting, yet galloping haste, the mud—
how errored and unexcelled my filament seems
when my father’s matter is settled so abruptly,
when his reservations are called on so sharply,
and even his greatest loves nod him down.

The haste is uncounterable.

Little Mongoose

As by dirigible, skin and ribs inflated,
make as if to pass me on the air.
Drift, son, drift over. The ground
my premonitions walk is uncharitable,
unfair, satirical— these lariats allow
I have wondered.

Son, your little grunts contain you pulled
into my hands, like red shine holds
peppers swearing in your mother’s mouth.
Tantamount boy, growling viverrine,
increasing your hands by flexer bits,
when I first stepped beyond my snares
and saw your floating limbs, I became
a cinder; the piss drained from my pockets
and the gasoline evaporated from my hair.

I felt each of your fingers in a reflex.
The sense of it shot light from my eyes
and still does, and though you play there,
and love as you do, your father is sinister,
wasps in cake.

Take down my apathy, my temperament,
and never rise in my ugly, perfumed frights.
Crawl past these copious sweets and reeds,
eating cloud and sun, floating crocodile eggs.
Pass me on the air, drift over.

If you send your regards, use gull or crow.
Aim it at two beams of light.

The First Person

I arose an I for all time, parched in gray.
Not vulture fall or mother’s carrion,
not pocket-stopped, not brine-hungry.
The lush posture is not my stand,
and in no tree do I build my sit.
The skateboard knee-scrapes, not on me.
The spidery crafting imprecisely real, not in me.
I am thirst atop freshwater wilds,
I pray you good vision and tripless twilights.
Permit me sip and I inherit the Earth,
pray me smooth ears and twittering nights.

I am bridled to the swift way, diving I, all time.
No gainful grope or sweet approach,
no pillow sleep or barefoot days,
not in my flesh or andirons,
not from the instant I know.

Ray Succre currently lives on the southern Oregon coast with his wife and son. He has been published in Aesthetica, Modern Drunkard, and nthposition, as well as in numerous others across as many countries. His novels Tatterdemalion (2008) and Amphisbaena (2009), both through Cauliay, are widely available in print. A third novel, A Fine Young Day, is forthcoming in Summer 2010. He tries hard.

First published in 3:AM Magazine: Thursday, October 1st, 2009.