The Opies (Just Married)

There was a grating in the teeth— like a piano
being carried through a story,
to the front of the shop—and one waiting
with a dove pressed
between the covers of his book—
like a purge
threatening to quote him.

The idiot could be by the street
or alongside his great love.
“Is this— the piano—milady?”
the beau stumbled
sharply in his stairs.
Her left eye opened first—
twenty hurdles lay out at once—
each hurdle an ivory letter opener
spaced at even distances from one another, and from her
to him with purple tears, lunging towards her,
the piano spine writhing
in his teeth.

Every ivory letter-opener he cleared released
a formidable height—
her right eye—
and the cross which hung from her eyes—
she wiped with the Twister mat from the window display.

It is impossible –they cried—
I have spread all this out—
my organs, my leafblower, the skies of tomorrow–
these hands—bound– doves are– so to speak
writhing there, set down, rooting there—
he is—sort tears— going long
how long– such bells
stepped down—and Twister moles flutter to
the nearest, the wettest ladder.
We stood on one, like a bride on her beauty’s face,
the grate shuddered, the shop
too, everything trailed by long hair, which sheds as it goes,
only apparently growing!


Farnoosh Fathi is the author of Great Guns (Canarium Books) and the forthcoming Granny Cloud (NYRB Poets) , editor of Joan Murray: Drafts, Fragments, and Poems (NYRB Poets) and founder of the Young Artists Language and Devotion Alliance (YALDA). She lives in New York.

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