From Scaffolding

Oct. 27th
Eléna Rivera

Either way it would be new to sing of love

with a “troubadour spirit” for this singer

The mind instead scratches the surface a blank

stare then scrawls a way out of congested space—

Perhaps it’s time to go without land the ship

not at liberty to say when waves were forced—

A teenager’s first ocean to teeming city

“When in disgrace” When brimming When moving is

The main attraction “Come on in folks!” a freak

“Show’s the thing” repeated landing at the dock,

sirens and height—a new wave place to vacate

before getting there, bouncing back already

with “When do we go back?” that is the question

Now how to be in love with the nowhere there

Oct. 29

It’s madness this falling in love with sadness,

that faint sound a song that keeps resurfacing

between thoughts that Icarus carried too far

seen from the river’s edge painting by Brueghel

She’s able to swim with help from a large dog

(over and beyond tale of the falling youth)

I envy the comfort that she takes from him

(falling brusquely into a dream) bathed in a

sunlit world where the shadows are deepest and

when at my desk voluntarily holding myself to writing

“it” the absent, the falling, the dangerous

just balances at the edge of the tale, of

dangerous dropping places where “knights” “ladies”

plummet and cannot recover from madness—

Started Oct. 30th finished July 27th

The images shift allegiance depending

on the uneasy edge memory uncanny

defined by degrees of sensitivity—

bebop in the stillness, language grips borders

ill at ease in the stillness still children sleep

backstage, troubling scene of man shaking a cat

until it died (can’t be erased once it’s told)—

in the background, turbulence is part turmoil

No cure for tiny world trembling all over

An autumn leaf falls tense shrieks in the hallway

mixed with laughter, sex, saxophone, flute playing,

then the lingering at a long wood table

Memory is restless impatient with these scenes

especially the ones with faint foundation

Eléna Rivera
Eléna Rivera

Eléna Rivera’s most recent books are On the Nature of Position and Tone, (Fields Press, 2012), The Perforated Map (Shearsman Books, 2011) and Remembrance of Things Plastic (LRL e-Editions, 2010). She won the 2010 Robert Fagles prize in translation for her translation of The Rest of the Voyage by Bernard Noël, published by Graywolf Press (2011).