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04.03.18
Walks Scribbled over Scribbled over Walks
Cold hole in my right pant
through which
                        grass’s eyelash brushes my calf,
                                                                
flirty infinite    

*

I’m shimmery, holographic,
mental projection on a stone church floor labyrinth

by a bored peasant
in a lost epoch
                                     John Clodpebble
his piddly knack
                       
not for conjuring face-shapes in clouds (commonplace)
but for cloud-shapes in faces (wow)

                                    I’m Son of Clod,
glimpse in a passing face

            burn scars on the sand where the reenactment was filmed

*

What’s this?

I’ve without even grinding by crawling across continents
my body down found
                                    the grail Américain:

dry cob in dust, rusty where chewed,
roughish, weighty, ok lob it into

stalks stalks

                        ritual?
                        yes, unrepeatable

its arc etches sky with the shell pattern rumored lost

*

Off-trail uphill
snagged and snagged by thorns until
a deer thoroughfare opens, then:

            a burr on the haunch
            of a cloud, I float around …

nary a highwayman!
                                    tra-la

            I can even pretend

cyber-warriors aren’t hunting me in the wireless air

*

Remember Grasmere Gulch?
O subdivided Youth!

I caught Chinook smolts in the big river,

sneaked the plastic bag plumped with water
past the treatment hut,

            poured them out in the creeklet pool
where it burped from its pipe, waited

for the flickers of life,
but

got my license and had better things to do
three years later

than check if any returned from the sea

*

I long to let walking be

about the great not-me, but

here’s a refrigerator wrecked in a ravine

            and I remember, 8, anxiously awake
at midnight, I was

discovered at the kitchen table
            drawing plans for the power plant run
by house-sized magnets of opposite polarity

and urged to go back to sleep

*

My legs by their gear-grinding
whir me open               dada contraption
in love with its uselessness
                       
                        (eggbeater-cloudbeater)

*

I, Clodpebble the Nth, admit
I was trying to have an experience

So, the bridge in the city of jazz leads to
a gate-less hinge pitted by rust on a post in a field, huh,

I guess there’s nothing left to open 

                        and, as teens with stones
must naturally smash

old plate-glass windows in an abandoned factory,
I smashed the creek ice into tangent panels
with the stick I carry,
 
was awed the next day
at the layered way the fragments had re-frozen

*

What is not information?

(riddle)

my religion’s only sacred text

if I had a religion

I’d text it to you

if I had your number

*

Alright I have a religion,
THE DOCTRINE AND, and
it changes hourly:

now it is a road curving uphill out of sight,
now a bloody feather

I’m not, however,
going to try to fly off into the “circumambient gases”
or tickle infinity back, I’ll just hunker
            in mud and mend this schism

between the bird imagery faction
            (who prefer the riddle of the whole sky contained
            in an acorn-sized speckled egg)

and the fish imagery sect
            (who say a hundred fingerlings breaking the surface at once
            escaping some larger thing
            ought to be stamped in metal somehow
            on wind-chimes and hung in our yards)

Sure, I say, and
            a farm dog tugging with bared teeth at a deer corpse in a ditch
            could be nice in gold stitching
            and a child breathing between gulps of water from a cup
            could be Hymn no. 2 in the Hymn Book

What about Hymn no. 1?
It would be confusing to have one
in this religion: the congregants are clouds and me
strip by strip peeling
a stick to arrive again at fingertip idiot joy
 
Don’t peace me when I’m in this state!

Your hair will get bark flakes all in it
and your hair is so nuanced and sculpted right now
you look like the antipope
my religion would hire if we could afford it

Will you be our antipope, pro bono, bro?

All you’ve got to do is walk around looking
like whatever happens next is not

the very thing

Brandon Krieg is the author of In the Gorge and Invasives. He is a founding editor of The Winter AnthologyHe lives in Columbia, Missouri.