Facing Maid



Which resting tone copulates with sleep? And wading yet, we fanatically awaken,
perhaps knowing that we have eaten of the other’s mechanics; of the others’ sounds
in desperation – to feed in grace at the troughs, and, to heal. I look to you
and in that service duly ignore – I do not remember if bathing was permitted
at the base.

If swaying pulse stalks formed a rivulet in the second atmosphere. What kind of terrain –
thistle, sagebrush, limbs foaming, that is – in its right hand, a ridged scalpel.
In its left, what exists, a peeled spiral.

As I enter its silence, this silence hooks into a code-scaled plot and tugs forward.
It and I find sensate. Urging. As we pass silkily through the distance, an origin forms
in the anterior. Feathery worms have floated by. Are we awash in ash, are we near the zone?

Lineages call out in the worms’ wakes:
Where is your clean dress?
Yes he is out getting a wire for the ceiling fan, now
He is behind the hot metallic mesh sipping the hot sugar syrup.
I slept with hundreds of families in the air, the sea
freight’s top deck.
Is it in dress that belies recovery from a crisis?
No, that’s too much salt.

Beyond the loosened rubies – my sight for so long – there are hills, and, too, lime-greys
that furrow into duty as moderator for the holier things left in you. At the sine, as it quiets.
Carts appear in what was not mist yet is now assigned. A carriage and another and
another, or perhaps the same, vessel begotten. We do not walk to them, nor do we climb
inside; alone, no horses.

Although we feel the idea, town, as a gravity in our bladders, we retain no motile
knowledge. I feel a place where mystery and the inert form beyond, perhaps.
Vandalized horses. So we are going in while also waiting. Empty standing in the waiting
faith. While at a station the cities have permeated before.

The fog presents its faculty again, insinuating vision. Where the memory of you or I
exists, perhaps lingers in fact and is passively ignored. Though without heat or song or
unconscious action or recipe or child. The license that exiting-entrance is part catalogue.
Your papers.
More to the point, your perfume.



In a lichen affront to astringency, this base dissolves into its center, as a crater,
offering its body to all shadow matter. The concrete screams its ancient anarchist shape,
which eludes me, the bystander, in all fashions of witness and conscientious attempts –
I find myself humming; hoping for communion, to ease into you, to locate the lost libretto.

In the bowl that rests abandoned. To surge directly toward the megacity by paean pat
frustrates the signifiers. And again, frustrations arise in the region (we read before
appearing here) that turn conversations to polish shame the same as any sky contracted
by a missile.

And the wars cushion our subtext. That built and rebuilt crater sustains filial semen,
also myth size. It is a difficult kind of base: therein siblings coil around each other, thus
waves tempt the moon who goes on without response.




Conduits. Sensing your question, I turn to you.
Your connection fractures in the atmosphere.
My forms tighten toward their integrity against you,
Blackening crusts of earth, such artifacts in the realm of our testimony.
Those left intact do not seed, even following brush fires.
Oh, purgacious dust has quieted the dreaming onslaught.

Neither you nor I, nor it, knows this. We search the grid
In blind eagerness for a moral memory eclipsed.
While the echoes have become our place-holders
they clip our extraneous shape by a moral memory,
then encouraging us deeper into the tunnels,
occipital to occipital, staggering with the balance of an analyst.

Jade caresses the strange structure’s series of roses
arranged along a meridian. While suspended in a parallel, the potential
is projected into junk, which activates caress: an established stasis blushes
violet, and we construct before us a resonator for any separate eternal, god.
Arraigning meridian.

The base precipitate. The mermaid.
And so, an equal procession in corona figure.
Once its name is made solid our names will receive allowances.
We consider how to confirm the legitimacy such an allowance bestows,
One option resists the hot work of it, another option
risks the earth’s suppression. Were faith to be confused for a courier of the will:

Along the footpaths we grind, repositories disabuse our returns,
And inside we can see the dismembered domains.
It is still banal.



A canyon has inherited pearl stones from the sea,
who once begged this abalone union to release (her).
A lurid braille tangles across the canyon’s greater dowries.

Perhaps it is worth noting that the region’s communities continue
to disdain their blood materials, the excesses of the primordial plea.
Here. The town.




They, the reported communities in the region,
did collect hewn filaments scattered
past any date by a basic moon.
The tempera filaments seemed to stick to various surfaces,
and to be in a shared gaseous mood.

The gowns of the dead
could be replicated if these threads were knotted
in accord with the rhythmic length of the deceased’s
names, recited, and then sewn together into the speakers’ lips.
The prettiest dresses.

The rescinded dead, temperate cartographies.
Templates of you and I recognize each other suddenly
and reach into the night.

No further entries in the catalogue.




I tire of pushing. Monotony pains its inverse.
I cannot focus. What is it - the elements pucker knowing
some motions have breached a composed and plain speaking.
This concurrent life becomes monotonous once you begin your exit.

It is detectable there, on the periphery now,
This time with fifty limbs.

The clarity distracts me from my curiosity.
You partner with a mystical sinking.
I have witnessed some settling in the vale and have pieced
together my hyperbolic decay; a half life giving its bloat to time.

And a person at the table, maybe, has also felt the barometric slaughter,
of the bleached room falling about us; the container is held in sonic suspension
by the activity of an airboat propeller. It is situated behind several rows
of small steel chairs, so that the collection of attendant molecules is sped into
the mouths of the seers before us, our panelists.

We are, and now we are, and I am lost.

I will not look at you. I cry for amnesia, to yield the shadow of the volcano.




Jhani Randhawa is co-founder and editor of rivulet (formerly killing fields journal). Her work has appeared in drylandlit_press, fog machine, and Entropy, among others. She is presently at work in sculptural and poetic memoir. jfkrandhawa.com.