Four poems by Lightsey Darst


Spork's Poetry
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Four poems by Lightsey Darst


What the thunder said

As you are greeting a new fate cycle, note the many eyes staring at you. Explore
what might be happening: if a measuring worm crawls on your sister, it measures

her for a dream. Examine news: examine what needs to happen: listen to news
with open eyes. The bees will leave unless, when a mockingbird sings at night, if a hen crows

but mostly a man's shroud resembles a suit of clothes, left open at the back. Understand
just how visible you are, let others decide when you hear dogs howl, the world

does not rule in your favor right now. If a bird flies into your house, by no means beat
at it with a broom but turn the mirror to the wall. Aim for more of what you want,

less silence. Some people claim if you touch, act as though you feel power, when
a grave sinks early it's a sign another will follow soon. Think, lead, trace, listen.

Warning on stealthy windows virus
Christ. Very important message, whatever it is.



A suicide at the escarpment: bound for a thousand years He must be loosed
a little season, do not ask why. An essence roused: "While her spirit soars

her body struggles to live" / from safe & selfishness. coldness. a poser
or pretender no more, but genuine gasp on a slashed throat, who

envies a shape pared down to survival its blood transfusion.
And having escaped the woman on TV news sucks it like a kitten, you

shake, mouth, "That I was born for something in particular? silver scalpels cutting it apart,
& here I am with the usual worthless tune stuck in my craw and wasted day.

how many. children starving." but what looks like a sliding door of shining corrugated metal
collapse & all that is, stars, their fleet chromospheres, fall

I come quickly. Who loves & makes, let them love, let them take
this water of life freely. Surely I come quickly.

Chinese quake lake still rising
Nothing can stop you from following your fate.


Last words of Alex the African gray parrot

I haven't had champagne in a long time. Home to the palace to die.
I am content, I am confound, either expression is correct. Pardon me,

sir, I did not do it on purpose. Codeine & bourbon, we got a bad fire,
why hast thou. Fear nothing. It's very beautiful over there, beautiful, all lost: empire,

body & soul. You be good, see you tomorrow, I love you. "Don't leave me": No.
We are holding our own, we must be on you but cannot see you.

This is the last of earth, the earth is suffocating. So here it is, what is it? Can't
you stop this? I can't sleep--"little cousins, called back. It's stopped. I want

nothing but death. Get the sledge ready, I want to go see my sister. Please don't let me fall.
Why not / so hard to / kaput. I really need a therapist. I have not told half of what I saw.

Filly's owner stands by his decision
Diamond. A very positive symbol of endurance, purity, and invulnerability.


Central heat

That arm extended raveling clockwise, a balance spar--"something
grows out of nothing. Hate a center, depart from a center, abandon

an empty center / "it violates our private space & the one place
we think of as our sanctuary." Lift your animal head, drink of

always this unfastening: our wish clears out, leaving space for--"heaven? but not
heaven, we were there once, clawing, naming ourselves--"an element like arrows

or rainwater shatters off your arm, fractured, not cut diamond, is star sapphire
built around a flaw. Some home invaders might have walked

in your house before-- "saw themselves in your mirrors. Some even claim "it's a
rush"--"that hush before you hurt or save, suddenly sure of where you stand.

Kansas wheat harvest finally underway
Dream of tears is consolation.


Originally from Tallahassee, Lightsey Darst writes, dances, writes about dance, and teaches in Minneapolis. Her book Find the Girl was published by Coffee House Press in April 2010, and her awards include fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Minnesota State Arts Board. She also hosts the writing salon "The Works".