Variance (1)

A clock is to algorithm as a

a cool waft of experimental evidence
this channel under no little pressure

don’t admit the water shortage
in morning this administratively built

easement repaved with good intentions
all vapor is to channels as

remember to put lasers nearby mere tissue
as health is to a license

as you take the dice up
well in return all the desks contain portfolios

all the checks are built into the sums
built into their curves and natures

rebuilt from scratch from parts we found lying around
the house a damn sorry mess

as guests are to basketry
taut manifestations of carnal desire

within each family discuss created distinctions
capital V to list the charitable contributions and

so willing as a pliant pet to wait all afternoon
a banker is to a house pet as a

each word different from the one before
the wind moves the tree branches in the night

unless as caught in a web
and I to the need to finish up what occupies me here

to craft a variegated leaf from litter
and drag a choking victim halfway across the state of

willing to suspend disbelief in the face of laughter
once not enough to carry the card

catch a fever in the low vault
which is a chapel for a new faith respecting our

you cannot kiss what you do not know
the method of madness embedded in his

“in the way of responding” is to “character” as “will” is to
get up, erase that whole last part from the chalk board

choose between evils, lose between the horns of the day
a respectable node removed from the lymph

in the park he takes a gander
to lose, to be arrested, to suffer a setback, to witness an effort

so keep your mileage to yourself and whittle on
as woolen socks are to standardized parts

wherein you pass the flashlight to the next person
all the while the earth’s access does slow but drastic sets the moon

(stock numbers caught on an Internet news site) revealing
a car in the breakdown lane with a towel tied to its antenna 

thistle, heather, stone, hillock, lane, channel
caught the pitch in

the stomach, felt as if the window was going to bow
the camel that was to the straw as the oxen were to the

new potatoes in a wooden bin in the shade are still, hot
their willful children straddling pastel-colored bikes in an alley between

this is not what you are remembering
to convince when the eyes open, the head turns to

step left first when beginning to march in place
more terrible than the day you found her at the repair shop not alone

more because the paper got jammed in the printer feed than that
grape tomatoes, kale, kohlrabi, avocados, scallions, cauliflower

sibling rivalry is to everyday low prices as tea in china is
speaking only for the house, that is to say

mint leaves left floating in the tea until they sink
the last time such a question will be allowed to become moot

as a horse is to a wad of tissue paper along the road, or as
irony bitter taste mouthwash canker sodium streetlight

wily wolves and my hand in a bag of stale cat food to disperse
(not the color of those new sharply-blue headlights)

chained to the post, behind a pike fence, told
and the willingness of the new members of the congregation

the auroras tall into the night sky, shifting
it can seem to reiterate the set of instructions

you email the memo and take a drink of terrible brew
instead of just revising the phone list let it lapse

and a moon mottled and sharp and cold, moving up
the children play dominoes with an antique ivory set

or you stand below a long awning and yawn as sun turns the color of day
still if the whispering is the sound of the sky fighting and losing

ropes on the flagpole, erratic rhythm through the night, loose, lose
until a car offers a ride, until a dream offers a total

back to the sink with the container of spoiled cranberry sauce
these things you forget and let go but they still make you

you don’t know what about the way you explain things makes you
a long arc of incandescent gas hurled above surfaces

raised believing whatever your parents might or might not know
is to a camel as a rope is to a half-hitched 

the sea anchor
skin that feels cool or hot under your dry palm, 

you can’t know until you stop, you
you fight against the hope that some balance… obtains

it’s like this: there comes change and there comes
stasis looms deadly and never the twain shall repeat

oh hell, help, hope, hear me talk to myself, peripheral-visioned
pinned in a quiet ceremony behind the brick garden

for worrying they have provided an itinerary of modular recitations
lean on the glass display case with a shopper’s fatigue (wearing, worn)

words torn up and left in the recycle box
a woman who writes about pride in cryptic terms, you wait until later

that [such feeling feels like this] is to [fresh fruit salad] as [a monkey wrench] is
change the tilt of the monitor, fiddle with the angle of the chair

do release the capstan
remembering he doesn’t even know the language any more, he can

or leave the manila things in an orderly pile and speak to the representatives
nor capture insects during the evening hours

chant in the middle of a fallow modal field
useless as reciting the names of ex-lovers, or calling up

junk mail, junk mail, bill, supermarket circular, bill, letter
the falderal they make out of the execution of a murdering on the TV

say something mean, you’ll end up crying
again the towel was on the edge of the bathtub and damp

fooling no one with the flooding of a small Midwestern town or some-such
here, where several important streets intersect

their power grid collapsing under effects of the solar flare
new kinds of silence claim that afternoon is subtly textured

while he wonders why they aren’t the same size
blue sky loses itself in its own wide

no one debating the merit of toys to the sense of work horse ethics
as vegetarianism is to tropes of 

while caret measurements reside inside the well-sprung cuts
calling out to the people waiting in line

the misery of wealth highlighted in after-school specials
or the method by which cats drink water

a cramp along the outer edge of your foot is to heartache as
no one remembers to forward your mail until you wake