from Abracadabra by Kimberly Lyons
New York: Granary Books, 2000.


The Concise History of Painting

The cones and cubes of an ideal town
rise across the lake
of brown-rumpled water
perfumed by egrets
and moths. And I fell asleep
briefly yesterday by the file cabinet
and had a dream, like a spasm.
Masses of clouds move sternly over
the ocean.
I suck on my violet duck.
I hit my spoon with the floor.
Call out to the
shadow of a saint
who has fallen under his horse



We watch together
black collide with white.
This is not the night
falling around snow

or a mailbox swallowing
our letter
frozen dark air around ice cubes
the white sink caps
wet black pantyhose
like a lake seen
from the
small window of a train.

The window of a face
on film
big kosher salt in a small black pan



Camille Martin

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