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JESS COTTON

3 POEMS (AFTER ANTONIONI)









            1.ANNA


                            Today I wake to
                            a crest of your
                            orange pink
                            leaves and
                            find autumn
                            where once
                            “you” were



                            Someone says
                            “keep busy”
                            Someone belts
                            out an absolute
                            of truth that
                            three-act
                            structures
                            are old props
                            and “things can
                            only be looked
                            at too closely”



                            Take, for example,
                            this body on this
                            morning blue
                            some would say
                            breathless some
                            might say if it
                            were not still
                            beating



                            And most of all Anna
                            I fear your fear of
                            waking one morning
                            to this morning to a
                            textured thing one
                            cannot clasp between
                            finger and thumb like
                            your voice its feeling
                            things that cannot un-
                            happen like a woman
                            or an island of which
                            you are both







            2.JEANNE MOREAU


                            I think only of you on this damp, unlikely
                            morning (there is an air strike, there is an
                            announcement, there are hearts broken,
                            there are limps transplanted) or rather of your
                            hard cool stare in La Notte that looks back
                            at no one but is our screen through which we
                            flounder for sympathy glimpsing your reflection
                            in Monica Vitti’s three-way-looking glass as
                            she scrambles across a marble living chess
                            set of a life of her own invention for what
                            else was there and how when you walk past
                            the rockets (how many rockets had you seen
                            in your love before, thousands, you say, none
                            you say) a masterpiece of indifference and so
                            you keep on walking knowing that your
                            world is better than no one’s and to turn
                            round, to pause and to admire that which we
                            recently built would be to risk not short of
                            everything







            3.VITTORIA


                            Outside it all grows stronger the liquor lacking
                            up the pan shot into the still of your cap-cropped
                            dress across which we hear the unspent foliage of
                            women hammering into walls into the next room



                            And so you appeal to too much stock to the blaze
                            and furnace of our autumn hearts spent in black-
                            and-white throes where fury is a kind of mutual
                            investment on bulking shores



                            And so we take leave of the trees while they still
                            stand where the untoppled balloons soar over roads
                            that lead into a sandpiper of a moon under which
                            the children still play and a man goes on reading a
                            paper of news and where someone is about to cut
                            our last patch of green









Jess Cotton is a writer living in London. She writes mostly about poetry. She appears in Hotel #1.





2016.