Four Poems by Lorraine Lupo

by: Lorraine Lupo

These four poems by Lorraine Lupo — two prose poems, two with line breaks — are celebratory elegies for a world that flares up in observable beauty before it fades from view, offering the reader essential wisdom: that for however short a time, our perceptions gives us meaning, or as she puts it “Nothing but our own foreheads for the beautiful light to bounce off, then it’s done.”

Refuge

Our guide couldn’t hear the birds. “That’s not a poison mushroom,” she assured. Perhaps I was holding on too tightly. When I fell into the lake I understood the lake. Without me it’s a simple thing. Now there were distances to be gauged. They got out their binoculars. “Don’t ignore the recognizable.” Then what’s left? The water repeats itself, the sun repeats itself, innocently. We were guilty. Dead leaves strewn at our feet and for no good reason! And was this the right amount, I mean for the kind of magic we came here for? Nothing but our own foreheads for the beautiful light to bounce off, then it’s done. Pull out the flashlights one by one.

 

The Power of Thought

All the lost employees in one room, talking to each other. Damn it, they say, the money’s been spent and on what? Plastic geegaws that go right in the trash. Life’s half over. What if we’re through inventing? I’ve churned out many a machine, some of them with legs running in the air. One starless evening we dumped them off the pier. I felt no freer. People on the lighted boat were giggling with rope in hand. So what. But some nights I can hear them, running and running…

 

Castro St., December 20, 2016

Yellow mustard
marquees you must

remember this
Eating a hot dog

in the 20 minutes
before the movie

muni orange nail polish
Strangers’ goodbyes

Bright beautiful
underground train

 

The Last Orange

The moon keeps me company
it’s someone else’s cup
collecting light

Experience enters forgotten
but replicable
I guess that’s why I’m here
saving treats until they’ve spoiled
like the last orange

 

Lorraine Lupo’s work has appeared in The New England Review, Fourteen Hills, Breather, The Art Book Review and Art Practical, among others. She edits the Periodic Postcard series.

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