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Sheila E. Murphy


now a long stretch made easy by adjustment [clinical]
given by heart across the floor
across a mirror image of the sky [unpainted]
Linda (word for pretty) is accomplished
Linda seeds the elements the body has unto itself

one leaves (t)her(e) feeling with thinking atop mussed hair
birchermuesli at La Grande Orange where Kristi is
these few minutes in a sprig of time away from work
one in one's soft clothes

crisp inflections of a personality
behind the counter
seeming thinking something others are not thinking
it is clear this is a Friday
in a little while one will be phonefound
listening to someone's rich [opinion] of six nouns one offers platter-free

how many instances of plush life can be fleshed into this many cubic feet

the therapist used to say "what are you telling yourself"

the response distinct from the repose is "shelflife"

how long each lasts

how many moments can be [can seem] extracted from an hour

the mirth or mourning

name the day

name the day after left (over)self


I have long refused to veto the yard
That is not in me rain collapses maybe
your nerve endings elongate merely tapestry
and if it is collectible I'm replete with innuendo
I remember Mother's saying that my favorite film
was full of that, saying repeatedly
(for adverbs are my very soul)
that ranch life could not possibly resemble
this ninety-four pound loveliness who grants
my chambers heterodox calamitous break
dockers if in fact these ordinal data have been
compromised the dream mean
while last night positioned me to speak against
a poisoning that I could neither prove nor quite
define all I knew was people whom I loved
were dying and I could only protest to whores
who had sold more than bodies in the dream
I specified that real whores were not the same
they had a service the transaction was repaid
perhaps but when a soul and other lives
come into play the green village
perplexed by another acreage went silent
and went soft went velvet and went moist
went stark then roseate until capital gains
were all the nexus and our ilk seemed meant
to fade into indomitable delerium the strictures
therein rode their way to mouch south
willows and a person could just rock on the porch
sway concept going forward back to formulate
another's sleep the sort of rain one
alters is the nest in mind before a person
lights some substance in the fireplace and
one need not drive to prescott to know filthy
flowers can be new again can be remembered
the drive along is crafted and the music
so much silence and if I just had the right tools
everything would have been seanced just right
tilted toward the hills that ache to print a little
tonelet mimicry of elfin song just one immediate
lithe decibel that leads into another and


Sheila E. Murphy's most recent book publications are CONCENTRICITY (Pleasure Boat Studio, NYC, 2004) and LETTERS TO UNFINISHED J. (winner of the 2001 Gertrude Stein Award, Green Integer Press, Los Angeles, 2003). Forthcoming is PROOF OF SILHOUETTES (Stride Press, UK). Her home is in Phoenix, Arizona, where she co-founded and coordinated the Scottsdale Center for the Arts Poetry Series for 12 years.

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