Beth Anderson

Vertigo (1)

Face your fears. This is old hat, situated above sea level
a bridge-length from the ground. This time appearances lend
the curvature of façades to how we see. During our examination
a conspicuously present conscience enveloped the room,
trapped a dress code inside as effectively as a blackout.
A torrent, mind you, nothing to help fireproof the rules listing
actions forbidden near original windows and revered bric-à-brac.
At first the refurbished lofts will be for rent. If you are tarnished
transmit your wants but quietly, with the sort of wink that on one
need claim. The spinning accompanied your request for a dance
and became a flourish on the treaty between classicism and
cracks in a breathy roof. The notion of a collective neighborhood
makes its way past preventive measures, looking for debris
with which to blot new signatures. Patrons with open pockets
have created a critic’s wonderland, with silken beauty round
every bend. The oasis was blue and golden, like a china cup
or a Technicolor dress. The dangerous cool nights
react according to shelf life, clasp and worry blankets while
awaiting banister riders on the landing. None of the tenants
has golden hair or blue eyes even though this is a flexible story
with a 20-inch waist. The time taken away from polishing the stairs
has resulted in a chance meeting and a lover’s quarrel. Stress
melted like ice into puddles, endangering skirts where they glance
over wood. As we watch, their eyes grow, and whistling moves from
distraction to message. A market met here for decades but
haste has destroyed the subtlety of all shrill signals.
Dust builds up in the corner, the result not of sloth but elbow grease
put toward a happy ending. When they moved in
the phone was not connected. Changed gather in the square and
sweet nothings form a zigzag through a grid of city streets.
There is road work ahead in the lustful medium, repair to the moment
at which we realized the summer would end before they could
replace extraordinary hopes with even ordinary endeavors.
Light creeps past the shades’ edge. In another hemisphere they hope
to measure the difference between stumbling over rats and
falling through rotted steps. The Roman roads were paved over
but still cover ground. That sound is made by rain falling insistently
on boxes holding delicate wares. Draw the bank and the green grass
around it, the paths leading to its doors and another safe to crack
by one of many methods for which height has smoothed the way.




Vertigo (4)

Throngs of overweight trucks hit the block like waves against a pier, any damage
corresponding to exhaustion. Where miracles are built we must walk for miles to reach
our parked car. If they sink, they must be innocent. Prosperity is clearest along its borders
and we shade our eyes against waning sky to see the edge. Behind us cavernous vessels
ghost themselves into visions of what travel may become. If they float, negotiations are in order.
Volunteers held out the subject as an olive branch yesterday, but today they cannot catch it
flitting from roof to rooftop calling the river basin home and demanding provisions. Find
specific words for the view you take in when you look down from where you stand and
only then will you be free to bargain. It was not the architecture that pushed my fears
to who will be left to mourn us, but a glance around does nothing to redirect them.
Errant thoughts stow away on the tongue, amass into curiosity if left alone and
unedited, a mix of rusted cable and cargo left undersea. Turn over and press down
along the full length of every question until the answers ache or make a sound.
There are harder ways to disprove the practice of claiming that what is desired happens
to be what is available. In front of your very eyes may just be that dream come true,
spangled and shining and complete with every accessory you’ve glimpsed around the corner.
If you scrape away patiently until nothing remains hidden, you may gain the power to rename
districts, pull hidden keys from under countless mats with a swirling internal command.
Long before the residents recover, you’ll be living like a gilded rider on a horsehair chair.
The last occupant moved in a sequence of specific anonymity, thumping to the rooms below
but evaporating in puffs of hot air. Summer sinks to the foot of the stairs to be tagged with
domestic extensions, goes public in an unlimited way. I have ingested all the options but
cannot synthesize. There is this situation, see, this gent, this dame, this anomalous client
who pays and takes uncritically. But then the park is so overwhelmingly large, teeming
with just-discovered phyla and swinging from chandelier to gas lamp as the mood comes
upon it. The ladder swayed but held you. Sensing it would take two to change the light bulb
I could feel myself begin to fall. Even in my sleep I twitch at an image of skyline
as it existed before I was required to partake, before we came to the renewed century and left it
for another. The inky umbrellas purchased on the street then abandoned in rain’s aftermath
conjure scores of crows gathered near food. The fate of free things is in fact far better than that
of inexpensive items poised for impulsive acquisition. The news threw everything off kilter,
adrift and adjusting. The glitter in the sidewalks should not be there, sings a recorded voice
in response to questions about minutes wasted trying to step in time. But if we check
all the cornerstones first then we will never be ready to learn on the fly, never remember
to carry a handkerchief where it cannot be seen but can be easily retrieved. We thought
we wanted to live where an intact pea evidences blue blood and cats wear clothes, then
all the new houses were torn up by encircling winds and we had to learn to open each letter
as if it were the last. My guess is that we will never look forward to any examinations
until we can twist into omniscient versions of ourselves, able to witness and report expertly
on time’s progress toward freeing its kin from what has been time-honored.