MEDITATION ON TRANSMISSION

(Dean Rader)

The map on my
tv reddens the
way a wound
might spread
across skin,
here, the earth’s
blue body brutally
infected, its slim
shape shrunken
somehow huddled,
like a child waiting
to be picked up,
held, carried to its
bed and sung to sleep,
in its dreams, death
comes dressed as a
doorknob, a handle
on a bus, a button,
a bowl of nuts,
the sun-stroked
sky, a whisper, a kiss,
and it says breath
of my breath, and it
says take me inside
you, and it says,
teach me to multiply,
and the earth
says, Look, I am
living, and the
earth says, holocene
and the earth
says, if something
isn’t burning, it is
incubating, and
the waters do
not part, and
the sun does
not slide into
its black box,
and the stars
do not switch
off their light,
the rain does
not ask the
ocean for
water and yet
above a
chorus of
clouds bristles
with birds about
their work
reminding
not everything
moving through
the air destroys.

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