Time is the shape of a cheekbone,
the lie of the nape of your neck.
Space is bending to reach you,
to wrap around your quiet breath;
to learn how slight movements
change it all, as worlds rush by
in a blur of upturned eyes.
This poem has also appeared in Message in a Bottle.
Time is chipped enamel, a grinding
of molars, the appearance of cavities.
We are sieved through its jaws.
In front of its teeth there are only
our tongues, which grow moss.
Our eyes lick the cones of the hills.
The wind tunes the gaps in the gully,
sets our incisors on edge. This brokenness
goes back forever. Old jaws fail to clamp;
their outcrops roll in loose sockets.
Rocks have a trick, here, of sloughing off
solidity, shrugging their shoulders.
They let us pick through their leavings:
rowan trunks, harebells, brachiopods,
coral. The land lies: tosses out
waves, ancient cockles, serves up
a fish stew of geology. We pass
time. Again, we’re underwater.