For Shape

I carry the stench of a fear left rotting
The sense of rejection
Steaming, untouched
Unwilling to part
And long stripped of its daring.
I'm hindered by lines that want to be curled
And squiggles that wish to line up
And the waves in the middle
That can't stick to either
And quiver and wallow
And suck air seeping in --
Dirty air too long left alone
Dusted in solitary
Pricked and squeezed
By the creases
And folds of the place.
The waves have no mouths
Though they pry at the squiggles
And the lines have no strength
Despite flinging their ends
And the waves have no eyes
But they carry the smell
And through it they notice
The black of the place
And the texture rubbed in
And carefully plotted
And the waves have no hands
But keep turning things over
And testing them, tearing them
To see what's inside
And I carry the waves
Though unwilling to wear them
And I sense what they sense
And feel the texture --
The roughness, packed holes
See the sponge left to bake
And matted and brushed with
The glaze of old glass
And I carry the stench
Of the waves in that glass
Their edges and glimmers
The color-blocked sight.

(Written in 2005)