Two Poems

Ryo Yamaguchi

Metric Foot

The difficulty was obvious, an object we always
pressed away from us but that would always reemerge
in the sphericity of the real. I cannot tell if this sound
is wind or traffic, but it takes apart my breath right
in front of my body, even as I step into the archive.
What dream were we having while we worked ourselves
into place? The coastline wrote something
across the contract you carried in your eyes, but later
it rained, and we pulled ourselves into a doorway
and watched the street reset. We’ve never
been willing to pay for beauty, I know,
nor decorate our volition with truths.
At the end of the city is a little grassy place,
and that’s where I saw the word I so wanted to say
sticking obliquely out in the noontime air.  

Peel, Erase

Already with one, there is two. Or is it
the long song of the escalade and its circumference
of pine? Thinking back through
the brightly lit colors, an appeal is hazarded,
letting out more and more weeks
between the repeating buildings, sometimes
a burning reflection of sunset igniting
the jumbled skyline, sometimes the face
cinched over a discussion,
in a fussiness of additives, a simulated philosophy,
the snap of the frenulum ticking off the possible.
The pursuit can be fully mechanized.
On the billboard a gleaming thumb presses
the sky back. Later I am wandering around
the exhibit hall with only lunch on my mind,
fingering the staple-bound pamphlets
with an obscure tenderness, erasures passing freely
through my body like any Thursday
in the blunt magnificence of the present.