Ben Lerner’s I know it’s full of flowers


I know it's full of flowers, music, stars but
But the pressures under which it fails
How it falls apart if read aloud, or falls
What we might call its physics
Together like applause, a false totality
Scales. The words are just there to confuse
The censors, like mock eyes on the wing
Except for Ari. No energy is lost if they collide
The censors inside me, and that's love


And that's elegy. I know I am a felt
This is the form where my friend is buried
Effect of the things that I take personally
A gentle rippling across the social body
I know that I can't touch her with the hand
That has touched money, I mean without
Several competing forms of closure
Irony, now warm and capable of
Decay on strings as we descend


(from Mean Free Path, published by Copper Canyon Press, Seattle, WA, 2011

and No Art, published by Granta, London, UK, 2016)