CONJUNCTIONS: A Web Exclusive
Mechanics
Sally Keith


The truss cuts early Autumn’s blue plane
              into uneven strips. Loss-
merging
color, darkness into this
                                     widening line, this blurred

frame. It holds, but the holding heavy
the frame not straight. We can never
touch the trusses. (They are a strong math)

                              though I do not doubt.
The leaves are (still) green. Fish still slip
              —especially in the fishhouse
                                                           the profiled eye (still) stares
on the bed of crushed ice.
              Is this a need (for interruption)?

(And) the fame is not
              straight (and) the car moves on (and)
the mind goes back (and) the hand
                                                           still waves

              Learning to find the moment, she said, is something solid

we can build ourselves on. The moment

(I know) is not, it is
                              the division of water, seeing this once
or: I will forget my eyes and see the thing doubled. I need
                                                                                       to understand
(the mind is divided, but) the passing

                                                                                 we never see.
What is (need)
                                     watching?

              Consider that the car moves at an average speed.
              The river is The Rappahanock
                                                           and cantilevers hold us (here).
              The town behind us empties out. Small houses (I do not know—

              what is their name?) fall from the center, teeter
              in a nervous line. Trailers grid the top of the bank.
              The whitewash of the fishing boat (below) reflects
              noon’s straight glare. But (I want)
              to touch the wood? Each existence
              extends. It is precarious

              or: It grows—it moves
              forward (from edge to bank
              with fish) with the straight

                                                               truss and time. Speak or hear—
              there are two halves of the brain,
                                      this part is not involved with speech.
Language passes
                      unites of words/mystery/faulting/the history of calling/folding

                                                               What is it we cannot see?

                                                           And how then shall we begin?

The moment necessary for crossing—
              it is not easy
to find. I know nothing about physics,
                          mystery is finding each moment, struggling—
each axis—every point.

The man, below, reels in the fish, holds
              its fat body in his bare hands, stopping
the struggle, stilling it, lifting it
                          off the hook—there is a hole
(now) below the fish’s lip

              but the fish still slips. We keep supposing
moving depends on this. The shadows
                          of the trusses (now) cut the sun into strips

              And consciousness—named (mind)
                                                           (named) space?

White caps, because wind. Shadows
                          faster and less and less sun. Or:

                                                                     the bridge—translation.
              Which pieces would you choose to carry over?

I was standing in the middle
                                         of the hill (the voice (still)
                                                           stands). The eyes looked
              with persuasion. I turned
                                           (missed ascent) did not achieve—
                                                                      the eyes too full (the voice)
                                                                                      too heavy.

The view best from the top? I will never—
              (see)/fingers/figures/penciled/paper
                                                           with grids. The grids for keeping
                          the lead in straight lines. The arrows (also)

arcs of precision, and rows upon rows and pages.
I wanted to stack the pale green grids, to hold them
              in my hand, because the grid could hold the numbers—
could mean the safety of line. Memory—

                                               I will cross
                                                           the bridge. The words-
                                      move around the room.

                          Live crabs
                                      in summer. Raw oysters
              in Autumn—their gray mass (in)
                          a punch bowl (and)

                                      the small cup holds almost
                                                           twelve two-tined forks.
                                               Brazil nuts fall, triangular (from)

              the shell. The shell
is empty. (it is)
                          hollowed out. We can

              know (touch)
                          the inside. It is rough. (It is)
              sculpted.

                          Will you
                                      not come again?

                          I will go—
there soon.
                          Will you
                                      not come again?

                          I will cross—
the river twice

                                                           (The fishing boats are gone
                                                                   the water is strange and gray.
                                                           She sits inside and stares
                                                                   at rough pages of a book.
                                                           She moves her fingers
                                                                   down the margins
                                                           thinks of empty space
                                                                   names the space)

                          the space—named bridge.