Cole Swensen

The Fourth Walk
February 17, 2016 Swensen Cole

The Fourth Walk


Among the ruined are the ruins. Rules even skies can wreck in shreds,

a rest of something caught in forms. A rent, we walked along an edge


of the city and thus of a continent (having found ourselves once again

in Vancouver) and of a sea. Intent on what we want. We wanted. We


thought a lot about the thought almost. An accident that aims. A sunlight

ends against a curve of glass. It didn’t match. We walked again; we left


the sunlight cut from hands. We’ve become gothic without even thinking

how contested be the scape, now erased, and now the fear, the ambient


ambivalent of can we please not be all effaced. Without even thinking (we

forgot the broken factory, the broken orchard, and the broken ocean in


precisely that order, I, who wasn’t counting, thought only of the tower,

cut against the sky and of the itinerant and their tremendous patience


in the face of us.

Cole Swensen is the author of fifteen volumes of poetry, most recently Landscapes on a Train (Nightboat Books, 2015) and Gravesend (U. of California Press, 1912), and a volume of essays, Noise That Stays Noise (U. of Michigan Press, 2011).