David Kaufmann


Blue wash in the seasonís idiom blue
Ash in the fire tipping cherries blue cast to
Tulip headed branches. A catalogue 
Of buds. The keeping of bees. A list
Of flowers and the pruning of trees a
Reminder.  I called. Please call. As 
Water flows downward so the stream cycles
Clouds in their swift determinations. The fog
That Zoe carves. That Lucia craves they love 
It. The snow at best a memory so 
Remember that they love it. We skied
For a moment and this was our fill we skated
Down the steps  then I fell.  Do what
You will say what you like nothing will
Change remember. Remember the aphorisms
Of delight the composite models of joy. Freezing
Rain keeps the farmer indoors, but he can 
Get ready. He does. Get ready. Freezing 
The frame as if it were joy. It was.  It
Is. Now do it. Wash the car, prepare your
Dinner make a list of all the day 
Requires. Itís sufficient. Will do. Now
Do it again.  From all this you know. We can
Predict the seasons through unsettled skies.
I think he means seasons, not skies. First it
Snowed then it rained  and then we melted as
If into the rocks. A simile. Some polka 
Dots.  Enough now.  So take it.

I could go on forever so let 
Me begin.  Begin again. A novum in
The parkland on the parkway a driveby
Experience as if by the sea. I love you. The granary
Sensation. The sifting of chaff. Dust settles in
At the end of the line as if 
The air itself were falling. Itís not. Itís 
Falling through the air, hold it 
A second now
Smile. Misreading star lore as
Star love is certainly a start. So is planting a vine
Or mending a trellis.  So do it. Resume 
The position and tell me your name. Myrtle. 
Redbush starling and thrush.  Immediately 
The winds rise stars slide headlong through the
Skies. Mists and obscurities, travel 
And rain.  And all this in
Our orbit so try it again.  Iím writing today
About husbandry resources itís all I can muster to
Tell you. Such is my wisdom. Not
The blanched hues of August but 
The blissed-out recalcitrance 
Of Spring. Evaporation. Earth. Less
Loamy than clay. Clayey.  
The water
Sits on top. Waiting. For the sun 
Perhaps or to seep down to our
APT FOR RENT. Everything underneath it
It all comes up. Eventually so to speak.

Breathless in its transparency not 
Waking or between. Merely breaking 
Ground. My obdurate fears my obvious 
Fears. The obvious recital. A cockís
Crow of morning  where no 
Cock crows. Except in a somewhat dirty 
Joke that doesnít work anyway so  donít 
Even try. Please. That this wonít get 
Read. That you wonít care. That youíll
Be dead. Of all displacements
This. Onto all displacements 
There.  You talk about fallow letís 
Talk about seed.  Kernel 
And shell. Seed the clouds seed 
The stars. Cede the stars their influence. O
Stars and starlets o
Riven complexities both 
Fear and desire my c.d. collection in
Its battle array. Letís talk.  Weíve 
Been talking about Jackson. 
Ever since the fire went out.  Fires 
Everywhere fire away. Stubble 
In the field ignited. Why.
Virgil doesnít know. Bakes out
Blemishes clears the bile hardens
And binds the damaged veins.  Whatever.
Whatever does for the glands still 
Does for me.  An operative membrane.
A garden. My slight protective skin. 

What erotics of knowledge. What 
Ecstasies of reading what. 
What you need to know.  Tulips. 
Dafs. Agriculture as far as it
Gets around here. The Japanese
Maple stunted by 
The shade of the neighborís 
Spruce. We love the shade 
The maple the neighborís spruce all
At once. Dryads  o material
Memory.  Leaves shoots the ground
Breaks without my help blood
Not mine keeps the squirrels 
Away the weeds at bay now look.
Crocus self-understanding. Trees
As the process of producing them-
Selves.  True I intervene 
Somewhat.  But not that much.  I mean 
Mulch. I mean water.  I mean what 
I mean when I mean it. Sometimes 
I donít mean a fucking thing donít
You get it. Some grassy thing that seeds it-
Self I thought it was a weed
Itís not.  The bulbs have come back 
Regardless look. You donít have 
To love it just live with it.  Or
Not. Please live with it please 
Live with me please
Live.	O gods  

Of the foregrounded moment, nymphs
Of the requisite dew, this 
Is an ode o let us live.  No let
Me begin. Or yes letís .  An apotropaic 
Move a gesture with  hands as  if
I really could begin to ward them 
Off. The bees. They scare Zoe 
So much. With a simile no
Less. There.  I did it it worked
Well at least for a moment there. 
I am praying not so much to 
The works of my hands as to some 
Stupid words I got
On the cheap.  Itís sunshine and
Smoke. Itís the woodchips of a summerís
Dusk at a campsite in the Shenandoahs whose
Very nameís a song evocation an invocation
Of campfire and dust. Zoe loves 
Them Lucia too. The whole damn
Thingís a song they love it 
Isnít real. In any normal sense look
Normal. Be natural. And for
Goodness sakes real.  
Like a tree.  Not an asherah 
A beautiful tree by a pagan 
Shrine these words not a kneeling
Stone nor an oracle.  
But a few choice words. This is
Already the past remember. 

No labor but the sumptuous ardor
Of work its lustre.  Doesnít anyone 
Else clean up around here?  Isnít 
The field  guide any kind of help? Well
No.  My fatherís death was
A quick affair my fatherís
Affair lasted longer. I remember little
Of this with any pleasure donít
Remember much of it at all
Unless you ask me so ask me. What was I
Going to say  Iíll say it anyway. There.
Call and response  slapstick or
Engaged. A version  of holiness from my 
Amen corner amen.  I think about 
G-d a lot only abstractly I
Think about gods a lot even 
More abstractly like the trees in
Zoeís book do. She doesnít get what 
Itís about but itís pretty itís
A story and she really loves
A good one.  Sheís five. Iím almost
Fifty. Somehow that counts. 
And not in my favor. Necessarily. Yes
But itís really too early to tell. Tell me,
Does my domestic revanchism in words
As a form of deed in my dreams at
Least of deeds bother you at all.  Or just
A bit. It bothers me I raise my voice. 
A simple fact it scares me.  

Irretrievable. A buried bone. The mapleís
Doing poorly under the spruce. A 
Cherry would be a pleasure in the spring
For a time at least.  Thereís so much 
To talk about taxes
Housework the careful construction of
Countless things. A list. I let slip
I didnít mean.  Necessarily. And thereís
I ignore. Some of what you say about
Me is probably true. There
Are spirits in the wood smells 
Amongst the trees little voices in
My head not literally. Turns
Of phrase amphbolies. They live
Elsewhere in the water hanging
In the air. Thatís between us. Just.
For everyone else I require 
Action firmness of touch  the promise of
Lots of skin.  An orphic flower. Some  of
What I say about me is not
Altogether true. Context counts.  I didnít marry 
My mother. Exactly. And so thereís
Hope. Prometheus says this  Zeus
The old windbag canít unsay it or
Say himself canít say a blessed
Thing I remember but talks and
Talks and  talks. Some of it scans some
Of it is lovely. Some of it might count my
Curses remain. Peripheral at best. 

Isnít anyone in charge of this
Shit or does it just
Happen.  Snow in the middle of April.
I mean to say. The tulips actually
Flourish in this neglect a dead
Head frost against all expectation but
The fruit  the papers say wonít make
It. Mere rapportage. The framing 
Premise of lucidity only 
Mine. There are pills for that. A swarm
Of words of waxy cells and relations A body
Of thought with its pleasures.  The body 
Is a situation. Indeed.  A not-so-spacious 
Not well decorated room with a rented
View. Live here then move but where. And
When.  Donít think about that again 
And again. Mistaken prepositions missed
Connections the sheer dislocations of 
Any given day. This I
Believe. In the merest brevity of this
Flawed spring dream what you can in 
The most obvious sense without 
The aid. The unconscious. Try 
It. A magnesium shot of sun.
Honeyed words either dissolute or
Dissolved I envy them in spite.
Of all the things to try at home. 

Son flower soon flower Zoeís
Orthographic innovations. Lucia's linguistic
Quirks. First there was thunderwear then
Wonderwear all in due course.† Butter on
Their matzoh honey on their bread
Acacia lovely word o my life
And light. Sometimes even the clichťs are
True. Sometimes even their names
Are true. Of everything.  Perhaps.
Perhaps the proper articulation of
Love is fear but unwillingly. At first.
Most serene objects 
Of my manic desire o women
Children into the lifeboats first o 
Captain not a captain me.  I
Invoke me. In the accusative how
Fitting. But whoís keeping score said
The little brown fox a few little sprinkles 
And wind. The forecast for today
And on.  Talk to the accountant and pick
Up the forms. Drop off the forms. Adhere
To the forms that you claim you make
Up.  Which is freedom and destiny all
Rolled into one.  Modernity on 
The phone will you pick up. 
Leave a message when you hear
The beep. You could always  finish
That line yourself,  If you make it on time.

Failed Latinity eloquent genius of
The crossroads hear me out.  This is
Less about loss than about losing
The maple to record recorded 
Winds.  Donít be fooled by these
Displacements there is a language 
Of gardens. I donít understand I 
Canít even name. The trees on
My block.  What donít I know about
Women. My beautiful daughters my 
Beautiful wife. That they are. Object-
Ively. The magic of compound
Interest the agency of the smallest
Degree. I have a house of rooms
And time to walk pondering.
My sons and daughters. The long tiredness 
Of passing passing by. This is a block. 
To walk along.  I have a lot.  These
Are trees now in bloom the leaves
Appreciating this springís chill now 
Reciprocate. A blessing for the first
Leaves a blessing for the blossoming
Pear a blessing for each single
Part. Nevertheless. I worry in
Spite or because a register of im-
Precise concern. Make a clearing 
In some symbolic. Sense the smell
Of grass the acquisitive heat 
The stuttering flight of bees. 

Forsaken points invocations equi
Distance all measure here. The vox pop in 
A lower key. Map of busy life. Yup 
I am America sound 
Of the trees the silent groves. Consider
The names of streets consider 
ELM and OAK and MAPLE. Consider
The pebbled drives. Consider 
The curving residential so-called 
Lanes the lights of the numbered 
Houses yes the rage of fermentation 
Yes what can be saved can.  Surely. 
Make soft  gatherings under palms such
Sedulous waste take it all. In tents
In houses in apartments like 
Yours. We looked out on 
The night and similar clichťs.
The count your brother. The demo
Cratic vistas specimen days my
Self the vast republic of forest
Trees. An orchid. We rode until tomorrow.
Public silence is nothing in
Deed such profligate beginnings
Numinous ends. Salience. Redeem me 
Now names to bring it
On Lucia Zoe light and
Life. It sometimes works
The great circuit clock be still.
At home just be. 

Angels of inadvertence guardians of
My. The paint splashes wood stains oil
Burns off the engine. The slim shank 
The thinnest bone. Welcome to the risk
Pool welcome to the deep. End. The ongoing
Trend is the transfer of risk. From corporate
Entities. So much for individuals  so much
For the bees. Is this right. The colonies
Actually collapse, the hives empty
This is not. A metaphor. So much 
For us in the water so much for Lucia
Running through the sprinkler. O bliss
Of suburbia unnecessary sylphs. Brown
Grass on the lawn if we had one. A 
Yearís a perplexity in a month itís
Gone.  Both the heat and the humidity.
Old standards tell they do. Tell
 Me about yourself. O Orpheus pity
About your wife. If you had kids
Well so much the worse. All
The manifest dangers of 
Retrospect. So much the worse for
Cultivated plants cucumbers dates and 
The trellised vines. So much 
For the fruit and the fig tree. For
Animals both domestic and wild. For
The children and for each of the 
Infinitesimal sources of care. You know 
It admit it it. All just rips you apart.