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luís soares

Blog do escritor Luís Soares

Philip Metres - Prayer

Wither me to within me:
Welt me to weal me common again:
Withdraw to wear me weary:
Over me to hover and lover again:

Before me to form and perform me:
Round me to rill me liquid incisions:
Behind me to hunt and haunt me:
Down me to drown indecision:

Bury me to seed me: bloom me
In loam me: grind me to meal me
Knead me to rise: raise me to your mouth

Rive me to river me:
End me to unmend me:
Rend me to render me:

Philip Metres - When I Was a Child, I Lived as a Child, I Said to My Dad

Saint Paul was a jackass, my father muttered,
keystroking his tank into position in “The Mother

 

Of All Tank Battles.”  I turned back to the screen,
maneuvering pixilated tanks.  Each arrow key

 

altered trajectory, each cursor tap a tank blast.  Fast-
forward two decades: in a cubicle outside Vegas,

 

Jonah joysticks his Predator above Afghanistan,
drone jockey hovering above a house on computer screen.

 

He knows someone’s inside.  Is it his target?  Who else
inside—cooking, crawling—will not outrun his digital will?

 

He is cross-hairs and shaking frame.  Stone implosion.
He watches the collapse replay onscreen, then

 

heads home.  Pizza.  Diaper rash.  Removes a thumb
from his toddler’s sleeping mouth.  Again, no sleep….
                                                                                          Our game’s

 

quaintly obsolete.  On mailboxes around our neighborhood,
our beagle would sign his line of piss, which said: it’s good

 

to be alive and eating meat.  He was adding to the map
that we can’t see, liquid notations on our suburban escape.

 

At Great Lakes Naval Base, my father imagined permutations
of disaster.  We were Region Five.  Coordinates run,

 

scenarios conceived, New Madrid fault lines, the possible
flood of Des Plaines, a tornado’s blinding spiral

 

rolling its dozer across the plain.  No preparing for it,
just to pick up what remained.  If a nuclear bomb hit

 

Chicago, the epicenter here, he’d draw concentric circles
radiating, a pebble disturbing the mirror of a lake.  Each circle

 

meant a slower death.  Between us and them, the Wall
was a mirror reflecting us and nothing beyond.  The whole

 

world was what the mirror hung upon.  He showed me how
to hold a blade, how to watch my reflection for every nick, how

 

to cut my face without bleeding.  I bled.  I hooked my glasses
over teenaged ears.  Outside, the blur of lawn became grass,

 

each blade stabbing upward to light.  I thought I knew
we see as through a glass, darkly….   My frames have narrowed

 

to lenses eye-sized.  My myopia grows.  To see
what’s happening, I open a laptop, lean into the screen: