Strangest fog, this illness.
Sylvia talked of tulips and white hospitals
when I was seventeen, and I thought,
"This is morose. This is what maudlin
is meant to mean. What strange
self-indulgence." And now,
I see the inside, or I saw it, once.
It's when the eyes recede into the caverns
of the mind, like cupping your hands
at your temples, except it's bone and skin,
in walls around you and the bright at the end
of the tunnel is really very white.
Walk like your body
is not your all.
Talk like a tin can kicked
down the road to sandstone,
soapstone lives you've lived, built
from the matter of your mind,
abrasive, dissolving, waterfalls of memory -
I used to hallucinate when I was younger am I still
hallucinating am I still younger -
Sylvia wrote hospital ice boxes
and no one ever see the day
of dead children or yellow flowers,
there is sin in it, somewhere.
Living there for hours on end.
There is sin and loss unmitigated
by anger or solidity.
dissolving into grass
and how you pick yourself out of leaves,
I never know.