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Matthew Moment


Minnesota trout have flown from river-boundedness

into the icy wind of oxygenate bliss,

feeling the sunlit miasma of their new world

above the brown bears husking empty shells in their fur:

part of this cyclical jubilee, and harmless.

Fickle black ravens purr like diasporic cats

with a cheer inexplicable, but not misplaced. No—

saturnal fathers still

speckle-spot the night sky like ornaments

of a grand, expensive nursery,

playing with an animalness of their own

for the audience of a peopleless world.

Not a one has wondered where they’ve gone

but the dogs—they whine today.

The long contended shimmer of animal musk

slowly and surely invades empty homes,

caterpillars waft through the erect spaghetti

of unkempt lawns. This is earth winning.

Verdigris fill sidewalk gaps and geese

perch on suburban gutters; gas station signs

spin until their heat-death.

The homeostasis of this universe goes unchanged

as if an ego-blow has been purposefully dealt

by the heavens unto a perished man.

Iconography, like Warhol, is eroded

by the sedimentary waters of animism—reset.

The fish find Red River again.

Despite the novelty of new molecules,

they have their home. All this may happen

because the pressure has been lifted.

Pressure, like air, is invisible and heavy.

Nobody scares at loons’ moonlit tutti tonight;

out from the cry, silence falls over the echo lake.

It is dark. Water laps ashore in demure flirts—

this is no more an end than a beginning.

Forward tides the great mandala.

Where I’d Gone

Hello to grasslets, goodbye to the ceramic

bowls of soup that kept me warm 

through wintertime in Hungary.

I eat, so gluttonous

and want to have my cake, too.

If the walls could talk, they’d

say: You never listen. So I listen.

And jazz has not a thing to do 

with my own choice to leave. I think that

love affairs are too straightforward, yes—

without a littering

of flats or sharps or syncopation.

Life is a big band, but love’s an

orchestra. The link between 

the wood, the burn, the warmth is not so lost on me.

Yes, I lived in a warm house

during the wintertime. Hello to grass.

I haven’t been to Wales when it is warm out, but—

I imagine it’s something like this:

a sky of perfect pedigree 

and grass-squares quilting over chocolate boxes 

full of lambs, bleating. The lambs stand in for

patters of my new heart beating. Maybe

I must be in love, no matter what the cost.

There are worse fates. Example: there’s the fate

of the Hungarian

whose house I left unoccupied, except

some groceries in the fridge, some ice in the freezer,

some pages in the wastebin &

a note upon the table telling where I’d gone,

left folded by a tiny FM radio playing Mingus.

Matt Moment is an actor and poet based in New York. He will graduate from SUNY New Paltz in the spring.

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