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Clade Song 4



The voices of frogs make orgiastic pandimensional love
with the pearlgreen the disappearing silks
of rain and the whole earth’s one
enormous piano playing itself
of hammers so delicate they can only be seen
by the blind. I’m avoiding the question
because I don’t know my role, top or bottom,
integer or oblivion, I’m ashamed to admit in this public square
my live skin’s a meadow of thistles
in bloom, consummated by the tender crush
of some future city, its elevators
and ships faintly audible in the last thoughts
of a fox foreclosed by a trap. Who could love this
everywhere mouth?

Chad Sweeney Chad Sweeney is a poet and translator. He is the author of four books of poetry, Parable of Hide and Seek (Alice James, 2010), Wolf's Milk: Lost Poems of Juan Sweeney (Forklift, 2012, bilingual English/Spanish). Arranging the Blaze (Anhinga, 2009), and An Architecture (BlazeVox, 2007) and the forthcoming White Martini of the Apocalypse from Marick Press. He is the translator (from the Persian, with Mojdeh Marashi) of The Selected Poems of H.E. Sayeh:The Art of Stepping Through Time (White Pine, 2011). Sweeney edited the anthology Days I Moved Through Ordinary Sounds: the Teachers of WritersCorps in Poetry and Prose (CityLights, 2009) and is the editor of Ghost Town, the print and on-line journal of contemporary poetry at CSUSB. Chad’s poems have appeared in Best American Poetry 2008, The Pushcart Prize Anthology 2012, American Poetry Review, Black Warrior, New American Writing, Colorado Review, Denver Qtly, Verse, Volt, Barrow Street and The Writers Almanac. He holds a PhD in English from Western Michigan University and an MFA in Creative Writing from San Francisco State University. He teaches poetry in the MFA program at California State University, San Bernardino, and lives in Redlands, California with his wife, poet Jennifer K. Sweeney, and their sons, Liam and Forest.