sporklet 16
Lauren Camp
To Appear to Appear

Where there is nothing


exists plenty. The fog has raced in.

Sunrise peels up without margin. I notice

the street has no edges. Tall


tree trunks. (Line not as place, but a universe.)


Over and into.


Pale blossoms on my walk; rain blurs the temporary.

Birds pend and flutter.


On the street a tired man and dog droop with each step.


I don’t know where I’ll be when the sun disappears


for two minutes, the sky unrolling

its voids. What do I know that I didn’t know?


The drizzle tumbles to land.

Ahead of me is no longer



The Line of the Countless Lines
inspired by Agnes Martin

The line is a rough teacher,
an opening that she wrote boldly,
writing it as a gap, a gutting, a laying down.
She carried that for me, built that, dismantled it, spun it out tenderly,
making space for truth as when it first came forth
and the accuracy makes sense
and the imperfection
scuttles us from our difficult moments.
Emptiness is not mourning
just as sex is not the door, anger is not night.
And the trembling—
she gave us that, and it is not depth, nor solution.
She drew her life and gave it though private.
I don’t remember when I met emptiness first,
but know I was worn from clinging to the rope of anger

and yet I could not let it go.

Lauren Camp is the author of five collections of poetry, most recently Took House (Tupelo Press, 2020). Her poems have appeared in Boston ReviewPleiades, Slice, DIAGRAM and other journals. Winner of the Dorset Prize, Lauren has also received fellowships from The Black Earth Institute and Willapa Bay AiR, and finalist citations for the Arab American Book Award, the Housatonic Book Award and the New Mexico-Arizona Book Award. www.laurencamp.com