They Will Sew the Blue Sail

AMONG THE TREES | Richard Tagett


I wanted to finish it

But I died

To go on listening...

I wanted to finish

The ‘makeshift forest of any old leaves

Sheltering soldiers so beautiful to look at

They filled it with peace’

But I died

In the arms of the Brotherhood

In the arms of the past from which water

Was a bubble of laughter breaking in mouths

 filled with clay

A future as if

Dreams its dreams as if

Ghosts were radios in the trees

Delicious with fatigue

Where presence is only in the word


In a double mirror

Something proffered in a vapor

You’ve come for—

The thought of coming

Between ink & blood


On a pallet laden with limbs & leaves

Leaves its mark

Lush in a brief of dying

So beautiful in its carving

Its craving

In trickster mirror

Where words fly through their wings

Over bodies

Awaiting applause

In miasma’s eternal dominion

Clearing the trees, bones, debris

In order

To scrape the sky yet keep her reward

With eyes trained, petitioning

For sound limbs, a soft cushion

Percht to weep in frantic union

The Brotherhood cannot bear

The edifice of state

Wilting in the lap

Spilling secrets on the ground

Between the graves

Of unfailing idealism

With arms or without arms

With a cause or a saving grace

So beautiful

Their fragility their tendresse.

What cornflower

What word negotiates maps

The living

With smooth stones to suck upon

All you’ve dreamed of

In the caress of a horny hand

Infinite emotions the composition

Of the me of them among the trees


We the mossy floor of love

In forests where no one is vulgar

Where nothing expresses us

Beyond death

Nor in life can you see touch

We dust of white frost on human faggots

C’est tout—

A card game under the stars

In panto

Death, the fucking copout

But we mean nothing by that

That wants no meaning

Permitted as I am

To complain my weakness with words

A radio is all the meaning you can talk back to

Its chatter & hum exits

These entrances to ghostly sidelines

Of a long-drawn-out procession in need of

 blood in need of commitment in need of youth

 that wants no meaning...

Just an image. A symbol. A screwy something

 waving in the breeze.

Over his covered body

But for his bloodied face

The boys’ palms were cupped to receive him;

He was playing at his family farm

When the air struck—

It was not thunder but a state of terror.

This is grace

But saves no one no thing

Only a will to power

Just an image

In a radiant afterlife

Sweet with desire that no one can fulfill

We pose

Our best to know we exist

To create a memory of ourselves

Condemned to the history we make

We dream with our feet on the ground

In a play of love & death in the lower case

But the poet was wrong—

There is only I

Where everything begins

Love a figment surging

Knows there’s not much else to say

Says everything’s already said

Over & over again does

One more yet unspoken phrase

Make a difference—

Do vampire priests...

Forgive me, for I am distracted

By world

Of ovens & mummies

Come up like breakfast

In a homeland I cannot remember

O absolute enemy

Closing itself off

In a mist of gas & dust

Clamoring for stars

Babies with stupid names

Dogs & cats amok

In parking lots of tears

This Godtalk. This sandbox

Where I lay dying

Among faces I cannot touch

Where’s no weight

Of anything real but what I

Can create in the me of them

Among the trees

A composition in moisture

Or even smoke...

Where I am a gesture inside you

Scratching at some kind of recognition

Reeking with radiance

In a pre-revolutionary dawn

In the humming wide open spaces

In vistas of insidious make-believe

All of it, along with the ants

At the burnt edge

Invisible amidst the silt of words.

‘What in the end is not vain?’

To dwell on beauty

Yet incapable of defining the perverse

The obscene thing it is

Teetering between life & death

Between nostalgia & violence

Rites of passage

On legs without bodies

Where in the congealing blood

Lies all thought

All revolt, all value.