Geoffrey Brock


It’s coitus interruptus with the sweaty world.

It’s the view from the window of the plane


As it gains altitude and the pines recede

Into forest—always it’s the pull away.


The pull away from the darkness and the heat

Of a mother’s bleeding body, toward cold light,


Toward names and language and desire and their

Majestic failures. It’s love, it’s death of love,


It’s junk mail: see that blue truck shuddering

From my concrete curb, bearing this letter


For the Current Resident at your address?

And real death, too—the red-beaked gull we saw


Abstract a mullet from the surf and wheel

Across the iron-black sands of a nameless beach.



“Abstraction” first appeared in Blackbird, spring 2003 (vol. 2, no. 1).