Looping Gravity

Looping Gravity

Loop quantum gravity and cosmology
put me in mind of Jimmy Stewart
offering to lasso the moon for his gal.

How can my brain bend around loop
quantum gravity when it can’t disentangle
an actor from his role? Recall her name?

Consider fluctuation and correlation.
Microscopic degrees of freedom.
Degrees of freedom I am told exist

unambiguously. Perturbatively. 
(Yet they leave gaps into which
Zuzu’s petals disappear.)

Coherent states exist: I hear equations
of motion, fluctuating and correlating
in space-time structures, are dynamical.

Like angel wings. But when coherent states
do not exist, quantum loop theory ricochets 
off the super moon. Lassoes my thumb.

Cauldron Song

After Jamaica Kincaid’s ‘Girl’

Fullmoon restless, my coven shakes
chestnut leaves into shadowplay,
branches squeezed so hard they moan.

This is how you raise the sash.

Patti waits below, hair uncombed,
horses pawing the ground for worms
she holds in her cheeks so they can speak.

This is how you make the leap.

Margaret empties from her apron flowers
gathered in Latin along the forest path. Spells
each word out with her long wooden spoon.

This is how you stir the pot.

Anne raises her arms, and letters run like sweat
to her hips. She shimmies, fanning flames; spins
her lovers’ names until they twirl round her wrists.

This is how you serve the feast.

One part story, two parts poem; a dash
of grated elbow, zest of palm. Slut-spiced
and bloody, our tongues conjure the dawn.


Like a crowd pressing in on you
his absence takes up all the space.
Jostles you. Never lets you be.

Inside this him-less bubble, you
continue to participate.
You make dinner. Tie their shoes. Breathe.

When, the instant he rose past you,
all else should have stayed in its place
caught in a game of Red Light. Freeze!

Yet the full moon still appears, you
see it in the sky that endures,
sketching clouds. His spine. Ribs. Coccyx.

Because all you touch is his, you
touch it all and, in touching, spur
the world to resume its tick-tock,

brash click of days unspent, while you
splice the rush of seconds, whirr
like a bomb that never goes off.

About the contributor

Kymm Coveney was born in Boston, earned a BA in Modern English and Spanish Literature in 1981, and has lived in Spain since the 1982 World Cup. She co-hosts a multilingual poetry recital series in Barcelona, Poémame, edits the Sea of Words writing contest, and is a freelance translator. Her poems have been published in Under the Radar, Prole, and The Interpreter’s House. Flash fiction, poems and translations can be found online through betterlies.blogspot.com or twitter @KymmInBarcelona.

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