Time

Chris Martin

 
All that happens happens

in the hollow

mouth

open mid-vow

knowing

only song will do

what an empty cave needs

done, drone

that seeds to fill

one space and then that

space’s space, what

are we made

of if

not chants.

Sun slumping up

the stucco, cat chewing

her tail clean, nimbi

darkening the fallen

leaves leatherlike, I make

voice, voice, voice, voices

like a fist

on thinking’s door

a fistula

wrapping abstraction

and binding it to what, morning

sickness, the lathed light

now flying through branches

made sinister

by season, a crook

in the amygdala’s grey

ministry and all

I see is a circling murder

above the antenna

that replaced the weathervane.

All I see is one

millionth

percent of the earth

at once. Chance.

I give you the fingers

of my hand

like I was giving you broken

beige rulers.

 
Copyright © 2013 by Chris Martin. Used with permission of the author. This poem appeared in Poem-A-Day on May 10, 2013. Browse the Poem-A-Day archive.

Poems by This Author

Becoming Weather, 21 by Chris Martin
I was out interviewing
The Tongue by Chris Martin
So taste


Further Reading

Poems about Voice
Coming and Going
by Tony Hoagland
Hearing your words and not a word among them (Sonnet XXXVI)
by Edna St. Vincent Millay
If My Voice Is Not Reaching You
by Afzal Ahmed Syed
If the ocean had a mouth
by Marie-Elizabeth Mali
Lift Every Voice and Sing
by James Weldon Johnson
Meeting at Night
by Robert Browning
Mrs. Cavendish and the Dancer
by Stephen Dunn
On Silence
by R. Zamora Linmark
Prayer from a Mouse
by Sarah Messer
Silences
by John Montague
Speedway
by Cedar Sigo
The Keeper's Voice
by Mike Carson
The Little Mute Boy
by Federico García Lorca
The Man Whose Voice Has Been Taken From His Throat
by Naomi Shihab Nye
The Voice
by Thomas Hardy
Voices
by Sharon Olds
Why is Quiet "Kept"?
by Paul Hoover