Matthew Rohrer


Claire Anna Baker "Wick"

Claire Anna Baker "Wick"

Perfect day

for museum-going

even a thing

all small and sad

in a clean room

can be a record

from the dream

of life. But I sit

lusting for the flowers

in a drizzle.

Afternoon rises

to the swelling

of the voiceful sea.

I’d rather learn

from one bird

how to move through

wet streets.



In the village

of San Vincente

it’s not that I don’t know

the fashions, but

the blossoms they make

no reply. In a shower

of sunlight the moon

is where it always is.

I spent the last 5 years

in the sweetest of jails

like the duckweed, forever

drifting. Two hours

in the late morning

I sit with the other

villagers washing

our clothes.

But she, whose aspect

I find imagined here

in her marvelous orange

coat, might as well

have flown—circling

and circling, a bird

flies into the trees

with a shrill cry.



Matthew Rohrer is the author of 7 books of poems, most recently DESTROYER AND PRESERVER, published by Wave Books. Recently he has participated in residencies/ performances at the Museum of Modern Art (New York City) and the Henry Art Gallery (Seattle).