“… the awkward, hybrid position of description.” Christian Metz

  

Between the tide and its remnants, sticks and small, dead creatures, there is water, which is never         

              itself at the moment of observation.

Between  the painting and its signature, there is caution and relief, chosen sutures and limits,

                 patient listening as a furnace sputters and someone says death and taxes.

Between the eyes is the heart of the matter, encountered and touched without knowing.         

                Thought lands lightly as a moth or fully as reason assigned to its grave.

Between the luster of day there are four occurrences, three grievances, two questions and a hand that

               reaches for something stolen from night’s ancient requiem

Between the need for speech and the comfort of silence, there is a plane lost at sea and a tinsel

                left by the roadside.

Between what you say and what follows is the tundra of signification and the desert of signs.

               Thought’s omens strike. As a clock rings the hour, the saying becomes the said.        

  Out of time and reach, there is the possible. You say a word and meaning flees the frame.

 

 

 

chernoffMaxine Chernoff chairs the Creative Writing Program at SFSU and is the author of 14 books of poetry. She is winner of a 2013 NEA and the 2009 PEN Translation Prize.

Filed under: Poetry

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