Christine Hume

Airport Smoking Room

no conventions of obscure origin no talking please no fake permits no protein motifs no unions on site no more credit to be had no meat-crazed temporaries no insult to pesticides no National Weather Service today

you know it is not difficult
to burn a human body
but she can no more forget
than burn through
until some trickle of feeling comes back
in the blue salivia of worms made of hunger
her throat swallows everything twice
                      and grows everytime
it pours its double-life down that hole
it blows out a blue shield against you
                      and quotes clairvoyance
                      in static lengths
then memory rubs itself all over the smoke
until it's a mystery to itself
craving ten million twelve sticks of gum

no more than eleven hundred pounds of contact no molecular recognition no rats out of elsewhere no animal noises in public no virgins no prodigal flourishes around the corners no plants in the no-fly zone because no stars need cleared

like a wet thing hitting air
           clabbered, cursive air
           the blank caress
finds a fable in itself
when everything is over
against the wall
                      there is a scene under smoke
there you climb back out of it
there it is alive on the wall again
locked in blueprinting
                      the shape of missing seas
the missing shapes she is mouthing
                      to you through glass
her lips try to burrow into your moody looking
as if they want you
                      to help them to save words
                      from settling
to suffice with their ghosts
whose fur grows over the cage
and creatures air against civilian air

no thing of sand to quit no running on a beam for kicks no beaming from China no foreign tongue in dishes no talking no crossing over no touching the artwork no standing close no relief from baboons please do not feed a baboon

nothing wraps tight around everything
                     promise it does promise
its clarity is nicotine for seeing
as chemical memorizes chemical
into continent-heavy shifts
and a third eddy is always so weak
                     no one sees it
                     or its afterthoughts
                     frantic in the hourglass
its breath takes her everytime
                     until she offers it breath
                     until it is no one else's
when the breath goes on its own
                     one more step
in the endless wake of divinatory circulations
like a hole leaking
a smoke of her own
                     angling to uninvent
the terrible visible

Do's and Don'ts About Fur
In Plane View: A 12 Second Miracle Play by Thomas Merton


© 2002 Electronic Poetry Review