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Callaloo 25.4 (2002) 1036-1037

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Empty Sky

Ed Roberson

      The day's change emptied
from my pockets:       copper pennies

on the desk surface,       pads
a water lily figure graphs

shiny newness as wet
on.       The pond star not yet

risen above
the daily furniture of an horizon,

the desk water
I see just the figure of the flower
beneath.       The buy the bet the act
of       faith in the offering cast

pennies       on
the felt green pond

water       emptied of the changes
the mind's been through       clears as stillness

as light upon light opening       light
writing itself       to the surface as

                  it does on sight.
— Desk water.
I see just the figure of the flower

beneath.       making toward sense
the float up

balloon of a bud
coming to light feeling

bursts upward not so much the flower -
no smell -       a radiant sting further up [End Page 1036]

between the eyes       the worksheet gone nova
from behind the ears       gravity's waived voice

from up the back of the neck
      the day's changes emptied.

      Pocket out of       which is
emptied the take

on flesh as sack
of bones of walking dice winnings       the day,

jackpot in
the body as container,

entire nirvana lake of coin
figures       of blossom       bells and whistles

empties as it fulfills.
      This shirt off my back

puts me in the street

the dewy job or no job
to undress from       works or none

I've lost everything

to these pennies'
wakening of a surface on the desk

only permanent
as the moving water or the changing

      light I draw       thirst for.
      The bowl of my

day       turned up       held out
and the larger sky

emptied into it.


Ed Roberson is author of a number of volumes of poems, including When Thy King Is a Boy, Lucid Interval as Integral Music, Voices Cast Out To Talk Us In (winner of the 1995 Iowa Poetry Prize), and Just In: Word of Navigational Change, New and Selected Work (winner of the 1998 National Poetry Series Competition). He lives in New Jersey.



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pp. 1034-1035
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