The Blue Tower by Tomaž Šalamun

The Bride Wins Both Times

To provoke the pasture’s ladder, to wash out the cat’s message,
What you hear through the walls is panic coming here.
In Morocco he whipped slaves. First I open the chest.
The ribs turn gray. I hold tight to the shovels, birds rip them from
my hands. I saw nomads, women on horseback. The dog days will
       come dressed in a
T-shirt. I’ll show your hand, my hand is your hand.
Who drinks foliage through the silver of trees? A carriage couldn’t
race by here, the brambles would wreck it. A believer
climbs the fence, look at that big little trumpet flaring its
nostrils. Debar clings to terraces, the house is full
of snails. Snow is beautiful. The moon calms his lips.
You flash him signals for cricket, eat chickens at midnight.
Isn’t the wood for bramblebees rowing the river?
They think nothing of closing the eyebrows of someone like you.

"The Bride Wins Both Times" from The Blue Tower by Tomaž Šalamun. Copyright © 2011 by Tomaž Šalamun. Used by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.