21 February 2006 | Vol. 5, No. 4

Cadenza for the Production of a Love Poem

Wet heat and

night drops from fat grasses

growing wild. Sometimes

a product or a sum gives us some

thing we never expected—

Take this scene:

                  Wind wings its loss

                  at the soles of

                  atheist coffin workers

                  who dig for

                  free and grin

                  in dew-light.

Can I find love

in that? Under or

behind the wings'

flutter? If I brush your cheek

with this finger

you'll still not know

the real poems I

had stashed for you

in that box.

"Like" and "as" chirp from the North,

synapses from the East,

and paint from the South.

West is auxiliary—

meaning rests her weary head there

and I'd make love to her

like wind does to Tigerlilies

when a window opens because

someone wants to lean

out and get a better

view of a half-wolf

strutting through a housing development,

and behind your back,

on a table, you neglect

to see the lilies quiver

from the openness.

                                          And they are.

For free in

a dew-light grin

we feel like this: Something

summed-up and produced,

black-boxed and finished,

yet in the half-light

of the production, (a moon

or lantern) we remember

preparing for bath and bed,

watching each's geometry

projected against the wall

by flame; climbing a cemetery fence.

It is in the preparation, the digging,

and not the dug where we brush


About the author:

Chad Faries grew up in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. He is a PhD candidate at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee where he is managing editor of the Cream City Review. He has translated poetry from Serbian and travels to Eastern Europe extensively. He has published interviews, essays, poems, and photographs in New American Writing, Afterimage, Phoebe, Prosodia, Mudfish, Barrow Street, Oxford Magazine, Left Curve, Yefief, and others. His poems have been translated into Serbian and Romanian. His manuscript, Measuring Clouds with a Stick, was a finalist for the 2000 Academy of American Poets Walt Whitman Award.

For further reading:

See the complete list of work by Chad Faries at 42opus. Browse the contents of 42opus Vol. 5, No. 4, where "Cadenza for the Production of a Love Poem" ran on February 21, 2006. List other work with these same labels: poetry.

42opus is an online magazine of the literary arts.

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