Lars Palm (Sweden): Eight Poems

(the great somewhere-or-other novel)

fork, he said. then he explained how to use one. she left


a big burly man & a bigger burlier woman are leaning out of my third floor flat painting the outside window-frames talking about how people handle the somewhat organized chaos on the street below. another big burly man is on a mobile lift in the
inner yard

(confused it)
faces grow out of the walls. yes. this is a third-rate horror movie disguised as a panda. pandering to their dust. lusting for disgusting things in life. back to the wall. & the featureless face it grows. repeating give my remains to broadway so many times he forgets to mispronunce it. then growing features to sell to some national newspaper

(wake up screaming)
for some reason known only to themselves four teenage kids have gone to a cabin way out in the woods with the stated ambition to drink themselves stupid. one of them sees a man in a hockey-goalkeepers mask lurking behind the trees. he goes to tell the others & they are paralyzed with fear & do weird things for about an hour. then the man removes the mask. the kids are relieved to see he has no face

(witch trial & (t)error)

trees spawning dark matter don't matter much anymore. any more moorings to cast off? are we talking about a revolution? something about the number of them per minute. the hour stretches into seconds. served by deadpan cops along with the summons & the rubber bullets. shedding your mortal coil. coining another phrase for excavating any number of cavities. caving in through the door. before. & after climbing that tree

(small treatise on the habits of balls)
for Jonathan

bouncing. paris was closed cold dark & rainy. more annoying than romantic. another jumper writing notes on how to fly dogs out of the islands. entry blocked by elephants. their drivers say nobody here even heard of mutual aid. or wolves. rolling. the navy base is quiet. a little too quiet. let's riot. & possibly general health. or cathcart. if he ever got himself promoted. not with a bang. but with fangs bared. barred the door. flying over fences. fending off airplanes. he fancies himself the bane of all things winged. & rosie rings. a ring of roses. hoses pose as toasters. causing a small diplomatic brouhaha. all but forgotten three days later. when finally the ball is set rolling. bouncing all over the square. where had it been made of metal instead of leather. perish the thought. though the thought was tougher than that. just sat down on the ball & said diddly squat. hurting when squeezed or kicked. swear by your nearly extinct balls. calls back immediately. rosie says she rang a bell. bell calls from his resting place saying not to disturb him. he will get back to work when he feels like it. in the meantime do what you will with the roses. or go to paris in the spring. & spring that trap. now clap. one hand

(winning taipei)

a helping hand brings you closer to a secret goal. a joyful reunion awaits your arrival. a new friendship will help cast a spell of enchantment. a secret goal is in sight. hang in there. a visit with friends will prove an enjoyable occasion. accept the next proposition you hear. all the little things will add to a happy journey. an unexpected gift will add to your pleasure. another's expression of appreciation will delight you. be patient & the answer will be revealed. bouncy ball is the source of all goodness & light. concern for a friend's happiness will enhance your own. know yourself so that you might understand others. meet a new challenge with calm assurance. memorable moments will make your trip delightful. new experiences & new friends will enrich your life. stay calm, cool & collected, & all things will fall into place. strange new experiences will add to your joy of living. that fleeting thought is worth pursuing. the concern of others will make your trip a delight. through the eyes of love all things will take on a new meaning. travel with a light heart & happy expectations. unexpected offer deserves serious consideration. unseen forces are working in your favor. unusual offer will enhance your future. welcome the chance to learn about others. what you do with sincerity pays the greatest reward. whatever you do, make it fun. wherever you go, there you are. within you lies the power for good - use it. you will attend a party where strange customs prevail. you will relax in the lap of luxury. your trust in a friend will prove well-founded

(a king's alibi)
for Amy

a machine played back the story. mother phoned father to me. enchanted the little kettle dripped hints of home-ground coffee. a cornershop spirit. an old minstrel show. warm featherbed & hope chest. a glimpse into the black. cigar so historical. set upon the anteroom shelf the words keenly followed. a crew telling in-jokes to themselves. the tailor divining milk from its coat pocket. that was the day a battery box suspended quiet. history told as an eminent doctor above water. napkin-folded boats find purpose at sea

make a miraculous bluebird. make wine to toast the tender empty church echoing bats. cage the dog's bark. veer into stampbook etiquette of peace. photograph a functional razor where unarmed people approach the hovering trees. sing songs of memos on tender tendons. break from citizenry & become the land you've always meant. lip-sync history along with the world. brighten the woman on the curb. report before sundown

they live as if within a large city nestled in a valley. husband mows & wife vacuums. they stretched each other to influence. they were like moving in. she broke every crayon in the box. household acts boiled over the likelihood of work. your signature loving you stings paying a piper's penalty. bulletproof people who classify ketchup as a vegetable with or without faith. you cannot believe the wind last night. made of water & light an iceberg floats into you. a patchwork seamstress watches her flower garden. i eat the neighbor's mountain side. i steal lines only to ask if there was ever a question. i have lived on the rooftop in internal weather. sun on top. i'm also taking your small house. shocked that one day i fall asleep the crowd never acts on its own theme. giraffes feed on leaves from my upper branches. streets report back to me. like snakes we shed guns

another freedom learning only the lights of asylums. city-born flies bark & reach toward the rafters. mosquitoes & night moths fill government

a capsized girl holding court. neighbors on a fence rumble. ramblings of old men seated on stoops. they discovered color returned. he dons his work-worn cape. resists a person who has false teeth & makes a certain hour. he was a bee in summer & in the wake of your buzzing bridge. played a sleepy harmonica that pushed puddles to deeper lakes. a peony eats its neighboring cow. after dinner teak wood fell for cork. lightning drowns veined wooden frames. fat berries ripened brought back from dust fields. peasants dance stomping tile flowering with sin & perfection. bourbon-doused dusk. every twig snapped. vipers in the grass heard their sleekness between thin blades. wars rained upon the fields. wine-stains or silk vest. background cow smiles loudly. silver night spreading westward. toad on an old country road exit. creek babbles brook-like. disappearance messing with directions on the drive back. sleepy gravel road pours forth evening breeze

some of these poems were first published (sometimes in slightly different form) in revista encuentro virtual & on Amy King's blog

© Lars Palm 2008