Fugitive churching in the elmwood grove, occult in the moor
of our meeting there, ice feathering, electric with hermetica, courier
heaving at the cottage door, if a thing can be left
unsaid, leave it. In my heart—
nothing would end. Asylum for one who returns
after long wondering; winter polishing the lake to a dark gleam
and the loon cleaves through fog calling out whoehere;
who, where. I had wanted to be elsewhere, intabulating
the language hidden in water latticing
to freeze with a semblance of what is
spoken to it. To speak would be like to kiss, and there would be
nothing, no one left to regret.
Somewhere, in some mountain stream or shrine, there is a crystal
alphabet perfect for spelling out anything you could possibly admit.
Tied to a slow drip delivered
intravenously, to be made comfortable;
small doors unlock
along the lymph nodes—sparrows
in the hazel thicket.
I have a message bound and am
some word, or otherwise.
There sits a stone
crowned with lich-flowers
in the shallow yard.
I would gamble my immanence,
knowing I will lose, for a chance
to keep her—if not safe
in this locket tarnished beyond
opening, then, at least, at the edge
of a dim thought after I’ve gone
into a room and forgotten, exactly, why.
Taylor Supplee is a gay poet from the Midwest who earned his MFA from Columbia University where he served as the first Lucie Brock-Broido Teaching Fellow. A finalist for the Greg Grummer Poetry Prize in 2020, and the 92Y Discovery Award in Poetry in 2019, his poems are forthcoming and have appeared in American Literary Review, Baltimore Review, Carve, Foothill Poetry Journal, Hotel Amerika, Hunger Mountain, Image, The Moth, The Penn Review, phoebe, Quiddity, Rattle, SLAB, Thrush, and elsewhere. He lives in Kansas City. taylorsupplee.com