Palisades | Emily Martin

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 Emily Martin is a writer and teacher from Brooklyn.



from Palisades

To say there is a method and is there are methods   To say there is a method there are many methods does your faltering prefer   To say there is a choice and does it excavate   Or does it spread slowly in a thick pool of glaze discrete   In the moonlight and barking what materials do you   Does your faltering prefer


Frigid waves   Small circuits of shining deconstruction proliferate in triplicate this   Supplication is escaping me it has escaped me the name of your sister and her cousin they   Hutted down in the winding daylong chatter   Chanting   Hunting parties hanging on the wall   Leave tea to steep on the counter


Images begin to well up like confessions   A lake balanced atop a mountain   An earth drained of water   Thousands of crumpled dinosaurs piled across a plain   They must have lain like that for centuries   The voiceover says   Without anyone to clean them up


She measures the breath of an observation   The breath of a scream   The breath of confession and all that it scrapes out and leaves splattered across the floor   A piece of shame   Trimmed in crinoline and ribbons   A little bit   Of specific technical information   Not difficult to describe but logistically necessary and thus made vague and subsequently meted out keeps them dependent what materials do you   Does your settling prefer  


A declaration of nonhomogeneity   Concerning the sky and the earth you will have to choose and articulate you will have to define and make distinct   Which lives we have grieved   What steeps low in these leaves   Settling waterdust crouching at the bottom of the cup   Don’t mention it   Forget it on the counter until it chills   Forms a skin   Islands of mold blooming across the surface flat-bottomed and rootless a scream and an observation in an empty house with an old desk


Am I not responding to your text message or have I died suddenly alone in my room would you be angry first and then sad or the other way around you will have to choose and articulate you will have to— Slack-jawed and scrolling a hotel on a cliff It’s like you’re so lonely you don’t even realize how lonely you are she said maybe intimacy is the radical thing is   I can’t tell how easy it should be   I can’t tell you how easy it is   Only fifteen   Picking the little gristles of the day out from the meat   Falling off the bone   Just


The glamour of television journalism or living alone in an apartment that is sunny in the mornings and in the afternoons   I am intensely ambivalent about it