Erin Wilson – Four Poems

The Book of God

You will recognize my form.

I have a head, two arms, two legs (although this might vary),
a beating body, mostly animal, somewhat plant,
full of shadows,
passed over by shifting bars of light.

I am you.


I did not ask to be here.


I kiss this
and mysterious


Knowing what I know now,
I know I know nothing.


I can not help but lean.

Am I crippled,
or is this my strength?


There are uncountable vast fields,
one for each of us.

If you scrubbed the black rises of the word alone
in an old tin tub
with a wire brush and a bar of lye,
we are as alone as alone can be.


From my field to your field
roots creep.

My crickets sing
with your crickets.

Their singing is as natural as grass growing,
or light being,
or darkness consuming all.

And yet it awakens a nebula
concealed and looming unnamed within me
behind my dense brain
like a parent watching me from behind a thicket.


I watch it,
this dark nebula.

Nothing moves.

It, I sense,
is watching me.


Creatures crouch the field,
ripping evil into the world
with teeth as real as pennies.


Small miraculous acts of creation unfold
and clean my dirty feet
like violets pushing their bruised faces upwards
displacing earth,
or babies being born and suckling teats.


Time ticks its treacherous paradox.

I, myself, project through the flute of being
like a small and bruised violet.

I grow upwards into
I don’t know what.

I fall back towards the soil.


The crickets sing me
past the next horizon.


This book goes on forever.

I do not.

There is not enough paper or ink,
but, always,
there is plenty for the dark insects
to sing.

I Talk So Much

I talk so much I need additional ears to hear.

I need an extra mouth, aside from my talking mouth, by which to say, shh, so that those additional ears may hear.

And with that extra mouth saying, shh, I will need additional-additional ears to hear.

And ears on top of those.

And more mouths soothing to silence beside all of the talking ones.

So that what I need is the Whole world.

And what I need is to be All of mankind.

And what I need is All time.

Hands Remember Best

Beneath lamps, from
arm caps to stumps to
castors, weighted into the decks of
eight-way hand-tied spring coils,
the girls have slubbed their
voluptuous flubber into
every contour of
living room furniture, making
right full use of
the room’s namesake,
and buried their
Rubens forms beneath
a cavalcade of
Klimt coloured quilts.
And while they make their
cherub puckers and
Cupid snores, I
snap a few candid pictures.
Later, boy do I get it!
“Not while I’m sleeping!”
she castigates,
but when she’s awake
she’ll not pose.
“Why do you have to take
pictures anyway?”
she neighs, stomps, then
coyly whimpers.
So I say, “Because daughter,
memory lives most vividly
in a red velvet pocket.”

Them Cows

Driving home from work, you turn off the literal
and metaphorical air waves of racism, sexism,
us and themism, and political percussionism,
blocking out the personal attacks
and all the kinds of badgerings and bludgeonings
that go on between human tankards.

You notice off to the side of the road
in the dim light, almost dark,
an enclave of cattle,
their necks stretched long and low,
the snow having burned itself away
in an earth-toned penumbra
surrounding them all.


Author’s Statement on Beauty

Perhaps it’s easiest to say this — There are stones, bricks, metal and mountains. There is the great volume of space around these things. And there is how light shines down upon these things, warming them, making even the hardest surfaces shimmer.

And there is darkness too. Total. Which takes these things into herself in a supreme act of nullification.

And then there’s morning again.

There is us, the strangers, standing on that stranger bridge, reaching to touch the stones, the bricks, the metal, the mountains, yearning to pull the strands of what’s shimmering over ourselves to make ourselves, for a time, more substantial.

We expend a good deal of our energy trying to stay away from the darkness, not trusting well enough in rebirth.

In the meantime — Beauty is the most valuable disruption in non-being, that only we perceive.


Erin Wilson has contributed poems to San Pedro River Review, Up the Staircase Quarterly, New Madrid, Tipton Poetry Journal, and Mobius, The Journal of Social Change, among others. She lives in a small town in northern Ontario. More at: