January 2001 / Volume Two / Issue One
Alice Cone
Despite Entropy

I've entered those
sepulchral houses–
marble floors,
alabaster walls,
stiff leather couches,
right-angled shelves,
ceilings so high,
windows so clean
I cannot discern
the distance between
vestibule and unnaturally
blue pool.

The urge toward disturbance–
grinding glass, slashed
plaster, broken water–
is just the instinct to move
matter from one space
to the next, to rearrange–
destruction rooted
in the craving to construct
another picture.

It's that infant howl
demanding language,
my body's proclivity
to ache after yours

We might as well ignite
this candle

Flame may devour
precious energy,
but its rich and listing
light, its pointed heat,
will form a distinct,
somehow enduring,

all we need
for now.
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