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Page 154

A long open sound
(aaaahhhh) starts to itch for
a consonant.

Muted rustle
of consonants. I wonder what
the next page is saying?

It begins with
writing a number on me.
Here come the words.

First opened, I was
a blank daze; now my daze
is numbered.

July night. We must
write on it in light --

Fireworks! Fire
plays. Then ash trails on darkness --
invisible ink.

Fireworks over,
a few fireflies, unawed,
blink on...off...on...

After fireworks,
fire flies -- my words
in your mind?

I was blank, but
I could feel. Who said my daze
was numb, erred.

Dog-ears, paper clips --
your scribbles make me a place
to be marked.

Someday all this space
will be filled with poetry --
mark my words.

Words? You want words
from me? What a nice surprise!
I don't know what to say...

Note: The "I" of the above poems (more or less haiku/senryu) is the page, blank or recently blank. (A senryu is haiku-sized, but with more emphasis on wit, humor, satire and social matters than is typical in haiku.) The last of this sequence is dedicated to a fine poet and old friend who died in 1994, David Ross, whose voice I borrowed for it. He doted upon and expected admiration, but received it always with "What a nice surprise!" And he would precede his long, eloquent, on-and-on-rolling speeches on any and every subject (he was expert in so many) with "I don't know what to say." The false modesty of the blank page?

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