Crash Reporter

 

Whenever Iím wrong, Iím wrong

astronomically Ė such as when I looked at your head

& saw only a speckle against a field of night,

a comet in orbit, a tangle of beauty.

I saw a new species of light in your eyes. 

All of which is to say Iíve layered my table

with maps to follow through the mountains,

the best words articulated to chart

a new course through the new storms

you have to ride out.  When I travel,

I bring every last one of my recipes

because itís better to have directions instead of

a void, better to have a cave to sink into

than a solitary stretch before a winter nap. 

The winter that canít wait for the leaves

to all fall.  The autumn that wants to keep on

being bright in the trees lining streets

that provide scenery for the life of your life.

Not to mention that right from the start

I intended to steal every last ounce of your smile. 

Not to mention that flaring into being every second

is another new universe for us to inhabit. 

Thereís an arrow pointing but I canít tell

if the point is my front or the back is my back. 

I canít tell if my voice got too harsh or just dumb.

Goodbye revolution, since it accomplished its aims. 

Goodbye to turning lonely in the dark.

Weíre living & performing & have been counted as brave.

Weíve been installed.  Weíve been added

to the roster.  It was worth traveling the roads,

even those covered in dust.  I was decoding

the marks that cover our jigsaw.  One more

piece just unraveled.  The mistakes already made

forced us out to acquire something better.


Frontier Red

 

Imagine one day that youíre lost

in the hectic mist of your very own hair,

all blue but without sadness

under an umbrella of drink.  Imagine

that your voice is bundled in roses

like dynamite thick in your hands.

Your bag full of tools to break apart

a new drawing, needles to stick

in a torso of fabric.  Your knees

start to get weak despite

the support, despite the shoes

on your feet that look stunning, really,

though the world gets terrified

as you wreck the whole village.

All it takes is a bottle of wine, a night

without stars & the coldest air.

Youíre happy to reminisce about things

that havenít yet happened.  Stockings

pulled high to signal youíre ready,

that youíre marching to battle to defend

any hemline, any random lapel.

Youíre like everyone else in this picture.

Youíre most pensive before you blow apart.

The solution is simple.  It starts

with two sketches, each better than you

realize, but the stain adds some wild

to the party I missed.  Tell all about it

in a letter but donít send it.  The best way

to deliver it is via knife deep stuck

in my slumbering fur.  The paper says

ďI love youĒ & comes with cross outs

& tears.  It says that, no matter what,

weíll be linked together for years.


______________________________________


Nate Pritts is the author of four full-length books of poems - most recently Big Bright Sun (BlazeVOX) & The Wonderfull Yeare (Cooper Dillon Books).  His poetry & prose have been published widely, both online & in print, in journals such as The Southern Review, Black Warrior Review, Columbia Poetry Review, DIAGRAM, Rain Taxi Review of Books, Washington Square, & Forklift, Ohio among many others.  Nate has his MFA in Poetry from Warren Wilson College (Ď00) & his PhD in British Romanticism from the University of Louisiana, Lafayette (Ď03). He is the founder & principal editor of H_NGM_N & H_NGM_N BKS.