Art Installation in the Time of COVID-19

Collaborators:

 

Wind, sunshine, water,

clouds, fruit, rocks

 

Text:

 

my son asks if I have an idea

of what happens when we die

 

I tell him I don’t know but yes

I’ve ideas, words, approximations

 

of concepts outsized by my

grasp—eternal, ephemeral,

 

what is essential work

in these days when luck

 

unluck has gone viral

and we cannot hold

 

hands to pluck hope, ripe

fruit needs to be washed

 

with sunshine, love, will

to create, postponing

 

questions past our certainty—

who are the gardeners,

 

what is the garden, I

ask him, what is essential

 

for creation, for life

growing, blooming, seeding,

 

he smiles. The wind uplifts

and we are cirrus high

 

where we marvel at how

much we see and don’t know,

 

hear and cannot understand,

hope and do not know how to

 

hold.

 

Music:

 

rocksplash of rapids,

your unswerving heart

 

—May 17, 2020

Earthspun

A curvy-topsy tornado funneled up, not down

uprooting the sky-trees from the cumulus-sea-above

 

dumping them on the ground where they are all

dying from lack of clouds and too much media attention.

 

Greenpeace has converted several transport slings

designed for beached whales but the sky-trees keep

 

falling through the canvas no matter how much

water the volunteers eye-drop onto gravity-bitten bark.

 

Several have melted completely into the ground

leaving behind no trace but an ineffable sense of loss

 

nearby if you’re walking barefoot, with or without an Iphone.

Some, arboreally brave, linger even as they disintegrate—

 

branches split, leaves torn, roots weeping past reflection

puddles that do not splash as more volunteers march toward

 

the storm, unaware of limbs and leaves permanently earthed.

The worms try to help. Sniff a cirrus frond, they urge, lick a bog

 

of too-blue sap, finger cerulean bark. Breathe thru your cloaca.

There is no app to map a sky-fallen forest. Choose: Empty

 

urns into sky-plashets or self-immolate. What? Ashes cry

the worms, water them with ashes so their sap may rise, fly.

 

All of us belong to the sky.