Monday, April 16, 2012

15 OF 30 Elegy for Andrew Rakovan

In the dark,  Jack Daniels on the rocks,
sleepless, the war still in your head
you walked the house, prefabricated
and alien to you all your life
the rooms never used

You built a house with your hands,
broke the windows from larger panes
and trimmed the lumber yourself
they ran a highway through it
and once, when i was young
we walked to the place it had stood
and watched the traffic puncture its ghost

You believed. In Edgar Cayce and Padre Pio
in spark plugs embedded in stone
in a library of copper plates under the Sphinx
in saucers cutting through the sky,
the beast in the bottom of the loch

Insulin injections and boiled sweets
In Italy, you drove through the mountains
for three days, with the blood and brains
of a friend on your shirt,
delivering medical supplies

You traded spring water for Cognac in Paris,
walked a Coney Island Boardwalk in black and white
with a black haired girl with my grandmother's face

did we know each other?
I kept my secrets, even with you.
Your insomniac vigils were yours alone
I carried your casket to the grave,
and did not return until I was carrying another body
to lie beside you.

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