Saturday, August 11, 2007

Two Poems: Doug Tanoury

The Presence Of Your Absence

Today, I came home to empty rooms.
Stillness and silence lie on the rugs
Like an old dog reluctant to move,
And I am reminded
By the ghost of motion,
A spirit of sound, some spectral
Scent that still haunts these rooms,
As I stand in the presence of
Of your absence.
If memory were a ragged couch
Or worn chair I would carry
It out and set it by the curb,
Yet I cannot cast out phantoms
That possess this place and
Follow me about from room to room
Like a loyal dog, unwilling
To leave me unattended.
Today, at the door I was greeted
By your memory and paused
At the threshold a moment
To acknowledge you gone,
Like a happy fixture,
A friendly furnishing
That sat in my living room
For many years, now
Replaced by empty space,
As I wait in the presence of your
Absence, there is nowhere to sit.

* * * * *

The Physics of Tea

Sitting in the living room
Drinking tea with her and
Talking about special relativity
And the fact that the most distant
Galaxies are racing away from us
At 80 percent of the speed of light and
As she considers this

Pulling a wayward strand of hair
From her face, she begins to twirl it,
Worrying it between her fingers, and
I am touched by the girlishness
Of this gesture, as she says very seriously:
"Gravity is a fear of being alone"
I laugh

Setting my tea down on the table
Hearing the percussion click
Of a china cup meeting the saucer and
As she smiles the freckles on her cheeks
Gravitate together in Newtonian fashion
And I know now that
What holds everything together
Is simply deep attraction.

~ Doug Tanoury was born and raised in Detroit and attended Wayne State University. His work has been published widely both in print and in electronic form. A number of his poetry collections are available in e-book form at his web site.

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