Matthew Rohrer


Poem Written with Buson [“How long and thin”]

How long and thin
she seems today
a field of mustard
smiling up at the sun
it draws her eyebrows
together in a little pain
I don’ t think I ever
saw calligraphy of geese
like this overseas
oaks and pines
pretending to be asleep
not quite dark yet
as it is at home
poor people, midnight

Poem Written with Buson [“The whole country”]

The whole country
in a courtly dance
its tiny mouth open
I pour another cup of wine
and falling, rising
the children remove their toys
around the small apartment
to their bunk beds
not quite dark yet
early spring with snow
on the wind
the woman across the street
bent like a sickle
collecting bottles and cans
knocks, goes on
I wonder where she lives
and the stars shining
on her greasy clothes