A Night in Which All Cows Are Black  
    Diane Reynolds

After love's unreasonable facsimile
we stumble in the field we thought we knew.
‘Til the cows came home,
we called it in daylight.
Now the main concern is boundary,
we conjure size and find it
round, the way its shape is large.
A great thing is a great disorder.
The thing now is to find
that smaller thing: a key, or window, death-wish
for completable paradise, even one
that won't exclude us, for which
we are the answer, simply.
For now we can't find even the ground
beneath our feet.
The outer longs
to coincide violently with the inner,
a kind of love held back
too long. Who knows
what's in the trees; the moon is nowhere
and the universe is mighty small.
We joke of how they'll find us, of headlines
lurid or sympathetic, crank letters to our next of kin—
then fall to silence,
all emphasis ironic
where our bodies have no end and begin
to bore us when they seem like God's mind
everywhere are once, still lost.
So this is what it is to be the center,
the sweet dream spinning, slowest, at the cog.
Are we children calling will o' wisp and fox on fire
to the air for fun?
Any ghost is welcome where
there can be no clairvoyance, where memory
is hard and night is meaningless because
An ink as thick as cream
won't write. And as for us
this foolish consistency
where edges are the main concern
won't last: a crow would shine here,
his feathers strayed far
from the subject, stars in a closet
forgetting how night is seasonal,
like us.

Diane Reynolds holds an MFA from Columbia University. Currently she is a consultant providing web content for a dot com in Austin, Texas. Her latest dream features a dog dozing all day beside her online bank’s revolving door.


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