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   Jacket 31 — October 2006        link Jacket 31 Contents page        link Jacket Homepage
Landis Everson, a recent photo by Ben Mazer

Landis Everson
photo by Ben Mazer

Landis Everson

Jack, My Vocabulary Said This

The voice on the wire stops
half way
The phone rings somewhere else
without an answer. ‘Hello,’
a voice is calling.
It shifts back and forth
wanting to call and answer,
a voice at the same time listening
not knowing who
to go to.

An accordion of air, a voice sitting
a ruffle of feathers.
It is like an unmating song.
Did Jack say
‘My anguish did this to me.’?
He died trying to rise
over someone’s vocabulary
which can be as light on the tongue
as love
if the heart holds
(it wasn’t a bird, so he died)
its heavy tongue.

You can read other work by and about Landis Everson in Jacket 26.