The voice blinks on, a neon dot
on the soundboard, the recorder chases
an imperceptible second behind the reading.
The library is dressed up like a theme park.
Here’s a day when I just can’t follow a word of it.
The Consul pours rich red wine to celebrate
the five Slovenian writers as the tape winds on
around the party, capturing the discussion of freedom
on its spools in at least three different languages.
Laughing, Wendy tells us her nightmare of the lightning
suspended in the sky. The lightning uncoupled,
no thunder, just the sky’s mouth wide open
as, in dreams, the words won’t follow
and no one speaks. We’ve assembled on the lawn,
still the horrible sheet of light will not recede.
(Published in The Beloit Poetry Journal and Chapbook #23: Poets Under Twenty-Five, and was also a Poetry Daily feature).