Gustaf Sobin

Transparent Itineraries: 1998 for Michael O’Brien, once again, at
year’s end, you rendezvous with
fracture, severance, with those signs that, vehement,
lead —ineluctably— onto

flaccid landscapes of their own

the very spaces we’d peopled, once, with seraphs and dragons, with fork-
tailed water nymphs, in default of which a silent hysteria had all too insidiously arisen.


eliminating, as it did, the very mechanisms of attribution.


(inference, now, confined to the inferrer; desire to each of its disassociated parts).

wherein, once, had fabricated wings.

elaborating, as we had, a space every bit as imperative as it was, by nature, illusory.

for ‘here,’ heavy with foliage, with the wild dicing of our own exhausted syllables, was never more than what the breath –the breeze, that is, within the iris of the breath— had transfigured

into the first tenuous outlines of an irrecusable ‘there.’

 —of those hallucinatory residues: the hard mirage—

 wherein were. wherein was.

wrapped, that is, all muscle and murmur, about the rippling screens of the wasn’t.

unto the nothing —sumptuous—foresworn.

enveloped, enshrined, but only for the length of our own tenuous



...otherwise, but a
squabble of bluejays in the black,
struck orchards, but the

shatter, the
spillage, the unremitting dismemberment of each


was only in the ruins, occasionally, that you’d awakened.


Only there, in enumerating artifact, cataloging all that auroral debris, that you’d intuited —your ankles jingling with shadow—the first stuttered increments of passage.

wresting out of the forgotten the yet inexpressible.

real as leaves and every bit as evanescent as whispers, what —at last— might track intention: everything, that is, that’s ultimately meant.



darker towards dawn, the
page, that
very moment, is nothing less than the face’s first


hesitant apparition, its vaporous mask, gradually, filling

feature. for whatever speaks, finally, trans-
figures. fortuitously struck, the
note opens on

deep corolla of a mouth, and the mouth, on the
roundness of
its own

cipient response.