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California

You prefer the idea to experience, the alchemy of disappearance set against a ramshackle alphabet. A name disavowed from itself still retains a tiny scent, an exclamation canted for another generation to uncork. From the land of dust and bald letters comes this hope, this pocket of Fools Gold. Consider the mystery that describes its own orbit. The egg shape, the opus and ambivalence that contains the rinsed out miles between mistakes.

"The mirrors are in the habit of flattering the vanity of their fair visitors, by scattering a handful of "salt"...

Later the sky might open as I pass a deep hole and the roof of our disbelief rises to another level. Dust seeps in between our conventional wisdoms, springs up like orange poppies lining dead-end roads. Musics on the various radios compete for air time. We need a washing but can't find clean water. Our poison ponds are gloriously hostile. Mold grows on everything it touches. Since I have been here, I've discovered my mistake. The original home. He said he felt "shot through" as if doubt was a palette of scorched blues. Whenever I tried to retain my balance.

"We are always on our knees, this time requires it," referring to the propensity for fake wood in a wooded climate, for fishing nets inside a trout farm. Undone canvases made to look older than they are. Beat up at the edges and set against a white window. He said, "I like the shape of sails." A tea-stained thought to sprawl against in the wind. Golden forgetting. The gravitational pull of boots and suitcases and lucky narratives and the their absence. What's lost in transit/translation. How else to be in the West where our footprints aren't steady & the land rushes in. A lovely claim to hope. Matter-of-factly pressing ourselves together as if providence, its awkward shade might show us better things that we've not seen yet has been all along its own relief.

Because the dishes vowed not to break and because speaking of them would mean they would, we ate wordlessly. Because the dishes vowed not to break as long as we didn't. Mention God. One can't pocket it, the mystery spot, where next a tree might fall. "As it was, they all say that it swayed from the perpendicular more than six inches." Where we couldn't hold our tongues.

"I confess to an almost religious veneration for trailing drapery, and I pin my vestural faith with unflinching obstinacy to sweeping petticoats."

Some say you have to have a "nose" for gold. You dreamed a steel shining color on account of your shaking hands. The miles it takes to make a parable, the probable a matter of conjecture, canons of relief. So much faster the seeds grow into their own peril, all of it done fairly begun. You couldn't get rid of the feeling that something would grow tall in your passing, something fly by, its motion caught in your blood-brimmed hat and then its faint trail blustering like ivy, uncertain and gorgeous.