Michael Rerick

from The Concrete Fields

Aerially geometric but along the periplus

banana tree rot and magnolia shade.

The list lists                 intercontinental architecture schools                       

            touch recalls spire, mater, dolorosa

                        and the strip of dirt through crabgrass

                                                                                                a walk

or flight over roofs,                                                                a jump

                                    quickly away and where

the sidewalk is, it buckles.

                                                Potholes, sinkholes lead to ingestion

pickled stalks at day,                                     roasted coffee

                                    at night in fog taking

the river smell away.                                     Cartographically

            a mare and carriage circle a statue lit

                                                                        by the shine of

hundreds of cigarettes and patchy red faces—


                                                smooth iron embedded in masonry, a sign

“House of _______” torture not mentioned.

                        An official sneeze and four square blocks get

                                    cut,                  relocated,                    pasted

                                                                                                            no matter

                                    what house what grows in what cracks

carried away.                                     It gets carried away. 

A child watches a terrier                               through the sprinkler            

                                                mimics a push pin

stuck on the flattened globe.



* * *


Fingering the garden, they dinner guest, they

                                                            why oval spoons not

                                                            flat, not scraping edge?

shell, stone, bone follows                                                                   cochlea

                                    beet root                      and asparagus.

                        Together three spices invent a fourth,

mortar bowl mash                                         and delicate ligula

                        in the OED “find fuck”

The better part of light slips away

                                                                                    knife sets set against plates,

            what’s corkscrew efficient?

Correct pocket key pressure dispersal pops beer bottle caps

                                                            the OED “god”

The book box of hats              of clocks

                                    but little wall progress.

Much light administration grows beets faster,                                 boiled,

                        beef wrapped in pork

                                                fried and baked

medium timed                                                                        tines placed

                                    why all matched

                                    why all chair seated

                                    why a table?

Congratulations! Belly rub

                                                            and a palatable                      recline,

                        sticks in the top soil

“find fart”

                                    Dye property to dye other colors

mixes messy in jars                and bring back for a garden refill

                                                                        the jar, not the garden.




* * *


Each sweater, coat layer

                                    slick under umbrellas, dips

in a stoop


ore from the mountain, scaffolding, rock by rock topped with mortar, keystone, rise, rose, risen, grandfathers with crushed chests leaving children, worn


            or bright coffee and beer doors.

If coat, bus.                             If not, drive.

                                                The touchable air a television screen

broadcasting through pants,

                                    static hair,                   embraces legs

            floats the buoyant body         channel by channel    cracks up

the redemptive skin

                                                at war with the weather


heaters burn dust to dust motes, blankets churn the pajama wrapped body, a mug by the window, radio of refugee camps, babies conceived get born


                                                                                                traffic’s unaffected

and a shower image includes one’s jewelry.

                        The uncertified and officially wet surprise themselves      

                                                                                    opening doors

with grins like pews               repaired, smoke damaged pews.

            From the bridge it’s possible to say “gale”

and girder sparrows,

all hands over cargo crates, the river.

Michael Rerick lives in Tucson but will soon move to Cincinnati to begin Ph D work. The last tarp he used was blue. His poems have or will appear at Bathhouse, Cue, Diagram, Fence, Nidus, No Tell Motel, Shampoo, Word For/Word, and Words on Walls.