Jeffrey Levine

Issue #
September 6, 2013


Another lump of plaster falls off the façade
Kant says if I think of a lump of plaster,
and then think of a lump of plaster as existing,
the second thought adds nothing to the first.
I beg to differ.
I have not yet by a long chalk drunk, and all the time
am falling, and occasionally strike a rock on the way down
in case I should forget I was falling. Where
by falling, I mean in love, a clumsy, lumpish ox in a rococo salon.
Another lump of plaster gone.

As if to emphasize the problem of philosophy.
That she is on the brink of plumpness, at the moment
she is superb, the best figure among all those pointing
at the too substantial likelihood of the future.
Her eyes are not Antwerp blue, exactly,
but alive, and worthy of kisses. As for philosophy
there are so many parallels between love
and religion, let’s say, the religious world
is a parody of sex. A kind of complex
sublimation, as another lump of plaster
falls from the façade, as if to say the lifting of a mask
is one of the transient experiences in all of life,
moments which redeem the mass of time, just
to see her soften is worth the risk of offending
the deep thinkers who think me into being
at play in the treachery of words,
the death of Socrates, her perfect breasts.

One has to know how to change bodies
be first a dove then a dream then pure
means of transport, fleshless feet walking
on pebbles of air, six months not looking,
not feeling the serrate edges of six-month days,
not breathing, endless swimming without
olive tree and without stopping, not
going to split the problem of Nothingness,
searching with the eyes on the thick surface
of the waters for a sign, a branch, a leaf of paper,
barely written in the clean-comings of light and wind.

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