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

owl graffiti

Histories

SARAH DUNPHY-LELII
I once dated a bull rider, which is very interesting, I still find. He was at the time no longer a bull rider, he had rather been one in his youth, but this lingered, as you might expect.

A person lying in bed in the dark

Mangled

DARINA SIKMASHVILI
It’s only us two for the brunch shift. I met Layla at one of those mangled people meetings so we have a shorthand. She smokes needle-thin joints halfway into the day and half-asses her side work and I’m not bothered by any of it. We can share a silence.

Kentucky farmland

64-West & KY State Fair

D.S. WALDMAN
And how, / if we keep going, pushing ourselves farther / from ourselves, we’d see, eventually, the blankness / we were one day born into. / I forget what you / told me after—I think it had something to do / with loneliness.