Corey Van Landingham
On a Morning When Our Weather Is Sixty Degrees Different Elegy for the Sext
it’s like a stranger is standing between us. In California the drought has broken and, where you are, first snow. All of a sudden it’s the future to a past that was, to us, once kind. I imagine the stranger looking down from a satellite, the line he could draw connecting us, bright dots on a distant map on a planet that, out there, held at a certain length, still impresses. I mean all those first words from the moon. I mean when we first found the written word and could alter what we had said. I said, No one is you, but popular science tells me that, in other dimensions, that isn’t quite the truth. On paper, I’ll get it right someday. “It’s difficult,” wrote Catullus, “to break with long love suddenly. But this you must somehow do.” I try to like you best removed. Above all this, perspective like that of an interested god, would the weather satellite turn the winter storm to peaceful swirl sent to your television set. Across the screen, would the world shift a little. “O Gods, if you can pity or have ever brought help at last to any on the point of death . . .” Sweet Catullus. To liken love and death. Our great mistake. When we saw our language carved in stone, we fell in love with it a little and hoped ourselves, too, permanent things.