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Alphabet on Fire
Alphabet on Fire

Signifying garlands               this zealous isle 

with love’s convention          overspread:

let the satellites wander        primordial

& from this heat                     quantum attraction

(I mean, I mean, I mean)

syntax astrological—                       observable universe of roses, 

orchids, lilies—                     until momentum orders

orbit (as law) and blooming sense. 


Alphabet on Fire (2)

Like in a dream
           where intention catches
in the instrument

(words came halting)

a lever—levee—released

and language aflame.

Do it again.    It’s miraculous—

meaning piercing symbols 

we offer like alphabets 

of flowers       the tongue, love,

is a fire                      transparent

razing fire       clarifying

a form             forged before its calling

then after—  

Christina Mengert is the author of As We Are Sung (Burning Deck Press) and coeditor of 12x12: Conversations in 21st Century Poetry and Poetics (University of Iowa Press). She makes films, and teaches literature and writing for Bard College’s Prison Initiative Program in New York.