Eileen Tabios (California, USA): Three Poems

GRACE REDDENS
(after Christian Hawkey’s “Thistles for Finches”)


In the passage of a blink
a howl descended
as grace bubbled up—

A trash can
kicked down the stairs:
music and laughter

because el cubo de la basura was painted
as red as your lipstick
as red as flamenco

I recognize the helplessness
of those who must dance
and those who can only witness—

Flounces transcended
the polyester reality of her skirt
As well, oh pale limbs

revealing a ziggurat
tattooed on an inner thigh
on an area where inscription must have been desperate
with hurt




FLOODED THROUGH
(after Christian Hawkey’s “He Spoke and, Speaking, Realized He Could Speak”)


1)
A room emptied
of all but curtains

despite expensive velvet
despite no rips

A room empty
amidst its curtains—

Well, except for
that useless light

and the body drowning
in it as a hand writes

2)
As a hand writes,
In Iranian mythology,
the cypress formed
the vegetal metaphor
for fire, for flame

“and reminded men
of the paradise he had lost”*

(Paraphrasing and quoting in No. 2 from a randomly-opened page, P. 86, from The Olive Harvest, a memoir by Carol Drinkwater (Weidenfeld & Nicolson, London, 2004)



PAINTING DANCE
(after Christian Hawkey’s “Spring Fever”)


… wind permanently delayed
ignores my open mouth.
Instead, blue triangles kick up
zero ash, dancing with red squares

Sequins wait for
flamboyance
without knowing the outcome of
“Matte vs Glass”


© Eileen Tabios 2008