D. B. DEVILLIERS

Poetry

Tag: everything

All We Ever Wanted (to know) Was Everything

that which does not kill me
might fuck me up irreparably
and maybe that’s real strength
after all a scar is stronger skin
a weld done well is stronger than
the initial casting
but it has to be done well
that’s important, that matters
it has to be done well

or maybe not, I don’t know
I’m not a welder.
I don’t know what I am.
I’m the carbide tooth at the tip of the bit at the
end of the shaft of a drill
spinning down through the ancient world
for purposes beyond me
and surmised only dimly even by the
driller
is he god? I don’t know
would god understand my hopes my
dreams my little anguishes any better than
I do those of the quarks that comprise
subatomic particles?
does a quark dream? I don’t know
I hope so.

I’m prehistoric peat moss buried by a
hundred million tons of time and
pressure burning at the nozzle cone of a
rocket
breaking the pull of the world whose
heat and gravity in the great and utter dark
where it all broke down
the devolution from biology into chemistry
the men came with carbide teeth spinning into the
spinning world and
through machinery and into the light
I was there
and this world
left, briefly
and from a great height maybe
put a picture on a TV screen on April 10 1997
maybe put a ton of TNT in a packed movie theater on December 16 1944
maybe put boots on alien rock on a
famous date
maybe blow apart seventy three
seconds after liftoff maybe
all the work
all the time all the love all the hate
maybe the sum of human sensory experience
could god even understand
could anyone
what is understanding
what does the carbide tooth think? I want to know
what does the crude oil think
where is the driller
where is the rocketeer
I want to know
I have questions

can you see me
can’t you see me
can’t you see how hard I’m trying
can’t you see the fire in my chest I hope to
burn forever
and will the weld hold?
and can a
quark dream?
I bet.
I hope so.

The Impossible and Extraordinary Density of an Ordinary Life

you can smoke another cigarette
you can make a cup of coffee
you can make dinner you can
send and receive text messages you can
stare at a blank screen and you can
be intimidated by its potential

people fight entire secret wars nowadays
behind screens
people bomb real live people to death from
behind screens
people do things
some people really do things
a man in a factory on the other side of the
country built my boots
a woman in a factory on the other side of the
world ran an injection-molding machine
which cast the set which bore the
shot that killed me
and the timeline split

the timeline is constantly split
between 0 and 1 are an infinite number of
points and you are one of them
and I am one of them
and between us a smaller infinite
number of points
and between each two of them a
smaller infinite number of points
and then there you are again and there I
am again
we are somehow between ourselves
and the infinitely small infinitely large gulf
splits in loops of loops of cells
interlinked within cells
interlinked
microscopic unions as far down as you or any
god or hack poet can look
and all the way up too
how could you not be terrified I am
fucking terrified I am exhilarated at the
wonderful terrifying possibility of the tiny
world we both inhabit and comprise

most things are not important to me
most things mean nothing to me
but there are exceptions
I am not dead

somewhere out there is a universe in which
everything is the same except I am
constantly on fire
and somewhere else I am in love with
love and we have a nice family and
happy children unhaunted by
natured and nurtured demons
in a universe orbiting the nucleus of an
atom at the graphite tip
of a pencil.