Saturday, August 17, 2013

What would the past say?

Cliff Grego : Study in Pizzicato .

It would say that it
does not mock you.

The past is always sober
in its gaze. The past would

say that you have lived, that you
never knew how many trees were

planted in your honor. It would say that
your backbreaking work was thwarted only 

as in a Noh play, as in a surface war; air between
the motions of force set against you, your fight what

built your muscles into grace that became dance that became
a sword that cut precisely. That could winnow the grain in a single

motion, that could slice a mountain from top to hollow and send its
halves rolling into the sea. It would say that even now you are unaware

of how you appear to the unseen world, how the arc of your life is pages,
pages longer than any schedule you had mapped out, any diary of your failure.

It would tell you things you know nothing about; it would bring up the precious
scrolls in jars you left in caves and ran from. The past would say it knows you

better than you begin to imagine you know it. It would trace those lines on
your body with a blinding needle till you saw pictures emerge that would

throttle your regret without mercy. It would call you out—crescendo
of beats rising with the tension—and you’d have nothing left to

say so that you’d finally hear the single string plucked that
would give the answer for you. It would tell you what

was stored in caverns as you squandered your
poverty, thinking it gold you threw away. It

would say, raising its voice, that it does
not know what you’re talking about

when you say waste. It would say
it cannot feel sorry for you, you

who rides the wind without
knowing your own wings.