Kristy Odelius (Chicago, USA): Three Poems

THE VIRGINS OF CHICAGO

The gold lunette just beyond the glass,
the cord, the snag, my lariat mind.
With magazines, we let fly like
magdalenes sweeping the stairs. Cassocks
frame damp faces behind the weather.

Slowly through a permissive sky,
an incident, a scar—stars disarticulate
from mud-spattered sails. The billowing
rings in a cell phone ditty, outfitted,
cheeked, sleeping their clarity. Mediums
slung across beds—daughters, madams,
divas feeling it—the Sapphic elastic.

Precursor to this disarming blue
dawn, red in the bent light of fever-
flower gossip. They wake up walking,
the virgins of Chicago, the rhetoric
in their step says fuck the folio.


THE VIRGINS OF CHICAGO

Where businessmen like to stand
in their underwear, late-night
kites cascade between the heads
of tourists. Each alone and gentle,
uniquely sad, oh that disappointing
brunch on the esplanade.

Instead, I window the Hyatt.
In my drawing a woman
stands kabuki-neat, holding
a cell phone, poised in red
on a man-hole cover.


The virgins chant:

“Manhole covers of the world
Pink anemones and a pagoda
Endlessly above the sewer.”



Attention urban planners!

The virgins sit where
no one else sits.




EQUIVALENTS

*

We knew, and it
always feels good
to know something.

We could die—a silver
laugh, a photograph, or
at the end of your knee.

*

They said there’s
a resemblance, clouds
in the ice, a force
in our boots.

On the porch love
is implicitly forged.
Today, to mimic its
drift is to see.

*

It was moving the whole time,
as if to hold you from the light.

I held your head
in the snow as if
to tell you a form.

*

Five fingers, how do they
glow? Sick like honey
in the scientific field—
your hand, and what it knows.

© Kristy Odelius 2007