Now I remember I wanted to talk to you between your Selected Poems and the punk rock music playing on the radio Between the blue irises and the Mexican lawn service The skaters and the dragonflies Do you know what it’s like here Scared beneath trees the light on the one rose is the one light The sun keeps going Tell me something between the yellowhammers and the leaf blowers Between a worm getting pulled out of the dirt into the sky and a worm eating the dark
Children play in the past in pastures and now I remember 7-Eleven parking lots skateboarding through black fields Cows move through the fields to the fence and don’t move again Cows move through the parking lot toward a bike rack in the heather Black tongues park out front and idle their engines Daisies chain and unchain In the morning someone hoses down the hot concrete and insects crawl through your name
The dogs are shy and snap chew through chain-link each other and now I remember fur and won’t let go or be beaten to death by kids Let the fur fly! The boys ollie over the dogs in their dreams In dreams some of the boys kiss them on the mouth Their mouths are clean and their noses are pink All the dogs I grew up with are gone They were someone’s sweethearts shitting on the sidewalk in the sun
Flowers call you on the telephone and the rain passes you notes none of us will ever read now I remember every line a pine needle falling at your feet Can you name the flowers in your own backyard Peonies drip onto the ground making long-distance calls person to person The car alarms sound like roses There are roses peonies and giant white papery things the size of your face and ferns Ferns ferns ferns The loves of my life
Birds are never lonely next to you in neighbourhoods and wings clear the air and are gone into holes of sunlight and leaves Now I remember There are holes all around Holes in children Holes in trees Holes in the water and in the teeth of small animals if you can see that and can you see that And wasps eating entire families of deer Here I wanted to show you
Michael Dickman was born in the Pacific Northwest in 1975. He has written two books of poems, The End of the West and Flies. He also wrote half of a book of plays, 50 American Plays. The other half was written by his twin brother, Matthew. All three books were published by Copper Canyon Press.