from Presence

by Raymond Gibson

we gave divided houses
child stand up anyway

hierarchy is no symmetry

learn when we're lying
and reweave the tapestry

you aren't our image
but rather our likeness

take part leaving's half

O semblance to assemble
split the difference between

our afterglow and absence

futures make echoes motifs
generations amplify a belief

our heirloom despair ill-fits
resist our eager silencing

here is whatever's insisted

contexts shift like desert
sand within the horizonless

we've no other referents

but ourselves in iterations
mirage ideal and shadow

sweep and pivot around
the mind's numberless dial

word must become bond

without trust we're lost
to bull-headed panic by

the forest of ourselves

why decorate a mausoleum
or deceive upon maps

why shun old travelers
why bequeath youth traps

poet curate life's museum

child mend this world
fell our crooked pillars

fight noise's roaring static

reconcile these ages for
threefold cords are not

easily broken though all
can break and shall

tame time's fierce cages