Perihelion: An Online Journal of Poetry and Mayhem
The Phoenix Issue, No. 16, Winter 2008
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GEOFFREY G. O'BRIEN

The Sütterlin Method

October, that idiomatic dream
of flowers withdrawn from boxes,
the difficult herbarium
identical with an induced look
that should, during transfer, become
sketches of rows, morning blinds,
the bright black canal exerting force,
house and surroundings lazy or impaired
but does not. As though colors regroup
in a box denied to the senses,
a dismal box that reminds me of
nothing other than the time
after bad plans are drawn, October
withdrawing along its beam,
delicate, nearly harmless, that October
which belongs in a mutilated house
but doesn’t remain there, hysterical,
yanked back through fresh ends
along the street, the canal, falling
absurd into series of months
stubbornly former, the affair
come forward with a twinge
of access again to be denied, tilted,
made and distributed by means 
that should function with some agility,
say the air at the corner of the eye,
but do not, a botanical dream
of series whose ends are perceived
with alarm, patient, irrational,
micrograms folded back in
to the slant of the other months
with a degree of unexpectedness
that should, if continued, but does not
continue, falling, layered, induced
months ago to do this, hold,
go out along a look that leaves
the senses, that should hang onto
wrongs while it spreads but doesn’t,
the streaming heart unproctored,
days resembling the changes
made to an unmarked case, months
that are eddies in the water
near a house, water bright black
clear glass gone trackless as
October, hysterical, impaired,
passing easily through the fray.