The Poetry Project

Edwin Torres

a ballad to follow the fellow i

for leave us unsettling
save us unsettling — trail us untellable tales

of our settling — fail us our bellowing
harrow'd and hail'd by our

failure to follow us — follow the fellow us
trailed in the full of us

fellable follows that see how we orbit our
leave to be full of us — healed in the hollow we

steal what becomes of us — saved what we made of us
sorrowed the soil we surround our unsettling

leave us unsettling — save us unsettling
trail us untellable tales of our settling

fragile ascensions of mayfair and waterbye —
raindow sondaughterbye

painlow some flutter wifi mortal loner
be — lower my lower i

called out of worry i will see to woe was a
fellow to follow i — trailed by the follow i

solo'd the sorrow
to heal what i borrow'd i — came to my sorrow

by —
healing the hollow i

and here's the letter I meant to send

and here let me add some more, a day later, and I
will add some more, a day later, and then I will say to you
a day later — what I think is clarity, the refrain is familiar

to continue I need clarity, which famously — what I think
is not what world thinks, a caveat
for the socrates inversive I perplex myself with

go ahead, parallel my infinity — there is nothing more real
than what has to be clear, I am circling around
what centers a longing — fair, that I not dance around the edges

I know something about me, is more — I know something
of luscious immersion, is more — of self, that I want to know
how deeply to reach, inside the more

that I want to know — how a world is hardened
against sensitivity and time, when all ways of touch and sensuality
happen, the pain, is thrilling and lasting

and knowing, of what it is — to be among the living, to light
that part of me, that's been asleep, and how alive I am
because of that, and how precarious this heart inside

to give, and need to tell, so much — as if those facts, already
don't assemble — as if I don't, for world
expect — to want, from me — to need, anything

and here, that giving is gratitude
and here, my giving
is listening

if I hear world, why can't world hear me back
I get inklings that it does — but I persist
whether or not, in my dna, the calling is there — to enter that ink

to write the dna we're given, to reshape that entry
— form is, this body — how to step into, this world
to see the shape it's made me

to create as seeing — underneath
the sight — what calls inside, to send

Issue 18