Poetry

One Poem by Molly Brodak

Our poetry editor, Wendy Xu, has selected one poem by Molly Brodak for her monthly series that brings original poetry to the screens of Hyperallergic readers.

Olafur Eliasson, “Beauty” (1993), at the MCA (Museum of Contemporary Art) Sydney, Australia (photo via Sarah_Ackerman on Flickr)

 

The Cipher

 

A nonbeliever accepts
a kind of fog around facts—

believers demand meaning.

Beloved fog forms a tissue between them, like love.
Burns off in bald light, like love.

Nonbelievers just put on their war wigs
and their war gloves
and pick

from a fanned deck of brute facts.
To prove nothingness exists

you’d need just one thing that was not itself,
one x that did not equal x.

One copse of alders in one dim dusk
that was none of the above.
Souls are made up
of such obstacles.

And a nonbeliever accepts
that God is very, very likely.

Because
nothingness is just not
how brute facts work.

A rainstorm, brute fact, shuttles brainlessly towards us,

and our evening is overtaken in rain,
rain and fog, infinity, the opposite of engineering.

I listened to some invisible bird
rattling off the facts of consciousness.

He used that exact word,
cipher.

 

*   *   *

Molly Brodak is the author of A Little Middle of the Night (University of Iowa Press, 2010) and Bandit: A Daughter’s Memoir (Grove Atlantic, 2016) along with three chapbooks of poetry.

 

Readers are encouraged to submit 3–5 poems as a PDF to Wendy Xu for consideration at [email protected]

comments (0)