Apartment Poetry Quarterly

6A              6B              6C              6D              6E              6F


5C Beth Ayer



your aqua dodge shadow had a hula dancer
on the dashboard and some stickers
on the bumper that mattered to you before
trash cans rolling in at the end of trash day,
the sound made of snowy grit and sand made
of the time of day when people return home
and of the hollows that tell which door is closing
and which is opening. there I know some things
about time travel but not the main thing
about time travel. and here the owner of these
cup noodles eats alone every afternoon and I don’t
know how to feel about the moon always being there even
when it’s not. that timekeeper of daydream, groan of ice sheet
and salve, the operative doorstop sanding down to your reflection
before the bay and its bridge and its underpinning of oysters
submerge a decade’s lapping at an inept phrase like worse for wear
in the same place where in may 1638 anne hutchinson delivered
what her doctor described as a handful of transparent grapes and
what the leaders of massachusetts bay called the judgment of god.


Define air
There is always a dog. Always
the sound of a truck backing up.
A hermit thrush tuning the sunset.

Window shade insisting, seeming
with intention to rap the window frame.
I am there too. Desiring but moving

like a train moves. And the heron
blinks under a blue moon. Snaking
A supernova could break

over your knees with the baseball
that is expansion. I touched three time
zones at once, once.

Along the median those weeds
define visible
The wind flails
and they nod in furious agreement.

All we see is this agreement.


When this tree was living
It stood still in this grove
Now it does the same

Termite powered
Bored by  woodpeckers
Towering over its own demise

People come here still
With their mysticism
Leaving evidence in twigs

You say this is a powerful place
I say I see what you mean

These trees are picking up after
Themselves while for millennia
We’ve been rotting below ground

A tree stops reaching for sun
Human corpses smell unpleasant
You say this is where

The pile of small bones was,
I can imagine it. The grove
Speaks easily from the afterlife

I think of standing on opposite ends
Observing each other, then something
About how power isn’t power at all

You take my hand
We keep moving.