Rigor Celsius and Intaglio

By SUSAN COMNINOS 

 

RIGOR CELSIUS
in Central New York

 

I’m allotted winter, allowed
Nothing that wasn’t before. Still, I am

Hovering a hand, tender to banks
            of precipitate. May
Our next day be beset by
Nocturnal mountains and stinging stars. Like this
Opinion, snowdrifts? This danger-of-us eclipsing
Rheumy streets and practical plows? Let’s

 

Aid only the air: Mock heat
            of liquid
Nitrogen. A helium head flares up
Down in a New York valley. Lift

 

Praise, shovels and skiers,
Rueful noses and itchy-pant aches. After
All (this temperate, tolerable year), the ice
Is so insistent—
            insensate, specific; flaying tongues that slip
Smart answers to cells
            of the metal
Element: its shrill decree
            that decades and octaves
            drop forever
            gallons below.

 

INTAGLIO
winter, in front of the TV

 

Oh, gray-hair:
Arm of speckled boredom,
Sit awhile
And pull your throat
A cask of some
-thing Peculiar.

 

The villagers are coming.
Let’s smile
With straws
And other
Cupboard staples.

 

Thief. Shoeless wonder.
The drop-cloth
Of the window
Strains the yellow
Light.

 

Oh, poked moon.
You like a flayed field,
Hinged-hipped in the house
Strays built for stones
To live in.

Susan Comninos’s poetry has most recently appeared in the Harvard Review OnlineMalahat ReviewSouthern Humanities Review and Hobart.
Photo by Flickr Creative Commons user spatz_2011

Rigor Celsius and Intaglio

Related Posts

A tree growing in a bucket. Twisted branches spiral upward from the large green basin the tree sits in. It's a sunny day in the woods.

Ugly Trees

HEATHER E. GOODMAN
We have a really ugly sugar maple in our front yard. Yard is a euphemism for dirt and weeds. Dirt is a euphemism for clay and rocks. Weeds is a euphemism for invasive species and exhaustion. But we love this ugly tree.

Signage in New York City at night. A lit vertical sign reads BROOKLYN, above a movie theater sign and a colorful sign for an ice cream parlor.

After Darkness, a Neighbor Turns the Lights On

HANNAH JANSEN
Not so much that the darkness disappears / but that after linked, round globes appear / on a humdrum weeknight under the trees, / I start noticing them everywhere, / glowing in their various iterations

A shattered porcelain shard of a city drawing laid on a white background.

How Memory Works

TIM TIM CHENG
We see the newspaper for tomorrow, not tomorrow / It’s already midnight. Today that is. News that stays / warm and inky on our fingertips at 2:30 am.