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Ben Doller
Ben Doller
The author of several collections of poetry, Ben Doller's first collection Radio, Radio was selected for the Walt Whitman Award...
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Satellite Convulsions

 
by Ben Doller

When I bend back to gaze at the satellite convulsions, I
am an aqueduct for twilit rain. Quite literally I stand

in the littoral zone: a lens--no an aqueous humor, my
feet on the land below the high-water mark, my hand

a glazed waver: hello light-purple lights, hello red spots,
you've beaten the stars out tonight but you're struggling with the

atmosphere, ain't ye? Over centuries the river became not
a river: Lethe's end crept together--self-scavenging sea

snake--& the middle filled with water--morphology dubbed it
a lake & now the moon swims in it & the moon orbits it &

the moon tidally tugs on it. The moon is a satellite in a fit
of paroxysm. One minute past, I emptied an aluminum can

of dull opiate to the drains to wash down my antipsychotics
& then Lethe-wards slunk I. There must be this wire shaking

loose in my mind, an unattended firehouse, a spasmodic
filament attempting to cool the baby planet but lacerating

precious gray matter. Thought leaves no vacancy for memory--
I forget & forget the rules, the thirst an auger, rain only whetting

it, I bend & lap some lake up, tongue it, suck the silty mammary
right where a light from the firmament meets it. I keep forgetting

the rules, a Ptolemaniac with stars & suns circling me; I keep
missing my cues, can't arrange the particles moments are made of--

and it's all good!--because when I bend seriously back & peep
at the satellite convulsions I am a sluiceway for night rain. If I love

at least I love aptly, terminally, like a man who loves his dinner until
he's done with it, then settles to the couch to easy pixilated dreams

(bounced off, yes, satellites, & beamed into a pale dish). And still,
even unfettered by history or hope, the world does not seem

shocking--simply something to fly a canvas balloon around, to 
dig a hole in. To climb into. To allow to fill with water, perhaps

it is raining, perhaps you dig below the watertable; it gushes through
the dirt; your bath is drawn & in it are drawn (sputniks & stars) maps

& charts with which to constellate your body. Connect the dots.
A little ladle with four handles--a tiny light strobes in the cup, in hot

convulsions of distance, bleats of temporal ignorance, synapse of morse
but no code, blood but no pulse, the stream but no mouth or source.






From Radio, Radio by Ben Doyle, published by Louisiana State University Press. Copyright © 2000 by Ben Doyle. Used with permission. All rights reserved.
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