Poems by J.J. Blickstein

for José Guinovart's "Homage to Picasso (1967)"

Gurney, fists for poles, for hands, wrenches for gloves.
Gurney with fibula, os & civil war in the underworld.
Gurney with dead skin, dead flower, inflected, infected,
flawed & pierced through shoulder with a blue vein arched
in its polevein with scar tissue the shape of teeth.
Gurney, bandaged midriff, geometric soft tissue, torn,
a removed vault, replaced with new anthropology, new jaw,
new weapon, new glass.
Gurney with broken light bulb above its head
broken glass & canvas as its wardrobe.
Gurney in antique cave hears some bombs dropping…
…bombs try to flee the gurney's ghosts, the civilization
in its limbs, the bones shaped into tools & instinct…
…bombs try to remove the question behind the bandaged lips…
Gurney with charcoal in its mouth.
Gurney smeared with ash & bone.
Gurney with twenty fingers, too many toes,
smells like a village, has a sophisticated odor
in its shadow.
Gurney, familiar with wine, elevated gestures,
knots, & loneliness.
Gurney, with its isolation, want of evolution, its curtains
& furniture, lies down in a box, disfigured, with its strange blood
& ruptured ear drum, testifies, spills its languagelanguage
made of water falling all over your world.
Gurney with a price on its head.
Gurney on the side of the road, looks like a trench,
a window, a cluttered bed with a view of its city,
your city, your ceiling.
Gurney they made you eat your children
in order to invert your sirens, but you're already deaf.
Gurney without the evolution that forged the key,
framed the door, invented the private.
Gurney in a museum, a decoration, fed canned goods
you make love to your wife behind the cage
to get away from their eyes & clothing.
Gurney, a bed of nails, white room, silk weapons, white bandage, red blood,
finally, when you're alone:

everyone who saw you went home, lied down upon your bed,
wept your color & pissed charcoal, smudged images all over
your cave.