There was a time when, sitting in a parking lot, I could make the parked car in front of me dematerialize. Could drive straight through it, if I wanted to. That was an unwashed time, birdcalls trapped in drawers, matching sets of months when a face could never move a face again. Dematerializing the parked car didn't take faith, it just took thinking about advancing in a particular calm, fierce way. A passing-through that was a dispensing with storytelling apparatus: focus on the object then harbor it no more and move unencumbered through reverie-made space. I could drive through the thing if I really wanted to. A fish might swim under a continent, a bird thread flight through a root system. I never test-drove the knowledge, but not for lack of confidence. Whatever sky there was. Whatever sky there was was. Whatever sky there was was flinched with chainsaw synapses. A while ago I taught in a top floor, small room full of left-handed desks. My students and I all leaned funny on our left elbows when we talked about "Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird." Perhaps I have always been of three minds. I guess I never drove through the parked car because somehow I knew, in passing through, it would hurt somebody, but I couldn't figure out who. [End Page 154]
Daneen Wardrop has authored four books of poetry: The Odds of Being (Silverfish Review Press, 2008), Cyclorama (Fordham University Press, 2015), Life as It (Ashland Poetry Press, 2016), and a 2018 volume, Silk Road (Etruscan Press, 2018). She is a recipient of the Independent Publisher Book Award, the National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, and the Poetry Society of America Robert H. Winner Award. Her work has appeared in The Iowa Review, AGNI, Virginia Quarterly Review, The Kenyon Review, and elsewhere. In addition, Wardrop has authored several books of literary criticism, mostly about Emily Dickinson.