Car of the Future
You ask the universe for a car, you get the car, but it’s from the future & you don’t know how to drive it.
— Bobbi, reading the cards I draw in answer to my question
Go on, shutter your house.
The rain is the rain is the rain.
It has no mind of you.
It’s just rain being rain. Gravity
draws it down from the cloud, draws it down
from the chain, collects it
in the pebble trench
you’ve dug around your shut-up hut
that won’t let it in.
And all you wanted was to write
a ghazal about the rain,
draw a map of its face,
a map of the rain,
which is impossible, as you know. No one
can draw the face of the rain,
not even the great
Hokusai who drew
to draw the demons out,
to free himself
of their tyrannical reign.
The relentlessness of the rain. Monotonous drone
of speaking voice and desperate hoarder’s grip,
even if it starts just now and feels like an answer,
like a second secret self—wiser, better, truer, yada—
it’s just the rain, just that dark cloud up there
Marvel of the wicking string carrying water
from the barrel to the parched plant.
On Trying and Failing to Meet the Model of Apollinaire’s “auricular cities”
Bury your head my little flamingo, the rain says,
To the tree in the mind with your begging bowl.
Not even the rainmaker knows the shape of the rain.
Why keep trying to paint it?
Trish Marshall is a graduate of The MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College. She lives and works in the mountains of Western North Carolina.