Danielle Blau

November 26, 2017 Blau Danielle



We never expected this. Shapes
in our shapeless garden. The crude

mound we’ve been growing, Dirt,
is gone. One of the shapes points

to itself, “Willem,” or no,
“Phyllis,” it’s hard to understand.

“That thing,” you say, “I think that
thing’s Dirt mixed with far whispers.”

Low chants from the rubbish shed.
In every direction obscenely

figs sprout. “I’m going in,” you yawn,
and of course Pop’s too busy with

his slime-mold farm to come out
and see. Meanwhile, terrible groans

are general. Terrible wailing and
gnashing and multiplying.

You stroll by, “Dirt’s back,” snap
your chewing gum like a yo-yo, “well,

I mean, not him exactly but a slew
of Baby Dirts.” I turn. The shape

called Willem is there and, behind it,
our garden, a plot of suckling mounds.

On my cheek I can
feel the shape’s spiny breath.

Gravel tears in its eyes  —
my eyes, it’s then I notice.

Danielle Blau’s Rhyme or Reason: Poets, Philosophers, and the Problem of Being Here Now is forthcoming from W.W. Norton, and her chapbook mere eye — published with an introduction by poet D.A. Powell — was selected for a Poetry Society of America Chapbook Award. Poems, fiction, and essays by Blau can also be found in The Atlantic, The Literary Review, Narrative Magazine, The Paris Review, and elsewhere.