Fall 1992 • Vol. XIV No. 4 PoetryOctober 1, 1992 |

What Cannot Be Kept

He was dreaming of the factories across the water's fog and pillared smoke, a man listing toward him in a paper boat whose outstretched palm read Wait. He was laid out on a lawn chair in the park; and that night boys were dancing in the branches of the trees at the party, floating in the crotch of two limbs, their motion the blur between nature and sex: the color of them prints across the eye as plums, in verging autumn, print heavily on the open palm. They fall from such trees, the trees are barren; held up at the cusp of two seasons, both falling, one so-called. He dreamt he was starving, so slim he could slip between the horn and ivory gates; their flesh wears away to a winter's witness, the history of fleeting ripeness packed in salted lines and photographs unfolded while it snows. The originals are ruined, worn to a mirror's whiteness by the river trucks drive over, cemented with progressive sediments, the waste of fruitfulness sanded down to almost-morning mist.

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