When You Consider that Freedom is an Illusion,

by Lynn Strongin

Dwelling even in the New South, & how
at our separate screens in twilight like in the highest boughs of an appletree
                                                          in spring when we were children—
we are happy. I ask—

Did one ver really walk across
a courtyard in Berlin?
Holding consciousness, a red precarious lantern?

On a winter’s night
we go to that
blue glow. an igloo, as though that will fulfill us now.

When you consider the gladiators of love,
.My sister,
it seems like a dream, your back pain:

One can’t push the river & I can’t pull
you here:
You never chose to come back:

Still, flickering behind my screen I can see the fierce adoration
of the ethereal
androgynous child.

When I consider
that it all may be an illusion
why do I tremble & lift it so gingerly which hands as it they’d found
                                                                                     the crack in the world

Athens Georgia, its seven hills, Seven like in Greece:
& the whole evening might shatter
like fractured paperweight snowball bleeding white into my hands.


Lynn Strongin’s “Audubon Wallpaper” is a part of her memoir Indigo. In 2006, the University of Iowa Press will publish her anthology The Sorrow Psalms: A Book of Twentieth Century Elegy . She also has two chapbooks of poems coming out in 2006: Dovey & Me (Solo Press) and The Birds of the Past Are Singing (Cross-Cultural Communications, New York).

from Epileptic Projections