velika plana, march 2009



on spring’s first day
the train
zagreb to gospić
curving up
into velebit mountains
station waiting
sky darkening
message must have
been lost
to pick me

to a place called
linden tree
velika plana village
7:07am waking
rice pudding-
we take turns
making it
stirring always
in the same direction
(said someone’s grandmother)
can’t remember now
if it was clockwise
or counter-
sweet coffee
boźidar, sara, silja
red tractor ride
sitting on haystacks
meeting the horses

months and months
and no one is waiting for me
touching my face
sunburn salmon heat
trapped somewhere
today i filled holes
with sheep’s wool
so the snakes
can’t come inside
today i ate whole pieces
of honeycomb,
the original chewing gum
they say.

running a marathon
using three pairs of shoes
choosing a blueberry crêpe,
ylvie there, in her bright
turquoise cap, running
to meet me
walking along the top
grand canyon edge
megan’s family and we are all taking a picture together
i am confused, looking at a big map
lines and numbers
can’t find the right bus
to get home.

walking to the farm
each morning
alongside a dog
named medo
protecting us
but terrorizing
other people’s chickens
nodding to neighbors
saying “dobar dan”
an invitation
eight o clock
morning homemade
rakija shots
what do you do
but smile
and drink

more snow
we are tearing down walls
plaster sprinkles
then sanding to
phil collins
on cassette
lunch break
eating soup

fences weaving branches
thinking about
wendy’s house of leaves
thinking people huddle
they hold on to what is near
i know people hold on tight sometimes and me i’m
i am far

sayin’ wait. we swear
we’ll love you more.”

i miss sleeping in and big paintings
my dresses, the loft
in los angeles,
and fish tacos.

i am listening to the horses
eat their corn
i am crossing my fingers
i am braiding my hair all the way
down to the bottom
scratches on hands
layers of blankets
two, three, four
riddles, stories

two days ago my brother turned 23.
i remember him small
in a red toy car
red and yellow plastic,
growing up too big
still trying
to fit inside
something about it
he just loved.

i can’t concentrate.
polishing saddles
this american life
lentil bolognese
rain replacing snow
“hard life”
by bonnie prince

who’s seen jezebel.
je pense à toi.
brown and blue.

“letter from hrvatska”
let me tell you, plainly
that i was falling down
from something very tall
oak or, eucalyptus
linden maybe cherry
down, landing some
big air only air
pushed it quick
inside to out
pulling little branches
from my hair something
angled wrong what it feels like is
sometimes still, this down

leaving providence


things in boxes
that used to hold pears
and i am scrubbing cabinets
window panes hallway
floors thinking i’ve hated
this house thinking
yes, i’ve loved
this house

at work cleaning out
another locker, another
family now floating –

with the blue eyes,
kind seth, and leanne
who always said,
“what a nice lady.”
the sues, and steve just
something about that man
i loved

u-haul, strange
to own furniture and everything’s
loaded and i don’t even stop
for a last look i just
completely forgot