A Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra

listen, timberwolf, a sound of snow falling in the other room

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blushed apricot! caught self-pollinating

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displaced they drowned in Pacific blue off the Atlantic

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petal by petal he watched the flower reinvent itself below the green stem

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his hand that once evening’s violet red the Musi to hold moves on

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chiseling away the air to find the orchid inside

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beneath the Mediterranean their arms wave like seaweed bye

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bittersweet: Patroclus’s foot fetish, Achilles’ heel

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aha! the fog de-greys here come all the doors

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in melting the snowman found a more-self silence a truer un-cerulean

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how Panipat thought Babur sounds like the blue green rain

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even when nude in purple Antinous

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skyscrapers fall in love preening into the mirrors of each other

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now many summers ago his heart salmons uptown for one no longer there

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are they blue with nostalgia the faces washed ashore?

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she penciled in the white space to the right of the dash

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in primeval conversation fireflies semicolon two sides of a forest

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chromatoptometrist, the wind has been in the lavender again

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asparagus! croaked the witch and croaked

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blue violet smoke now his written works signaled across the metropolis

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many coffins have a silver lining

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suddenly bells. the red orange clouds look underdone

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nevertheless the melon rind smiles

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his mind so still only its tumbleweeds’ thoughts roam

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it tickled Ali Pasha pink to hear his rings clinking inside a bey’s bottom

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relieved of their strange fruit lifejackets like orange peels

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in Siena an Old Master and its viewer race to not move

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beyond the black window, pine tree, for what are you reaching?

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between brick walls her old song, briefly

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his morning prayer a yellow-green bug husk pierced with sun

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zaatar having been planted cadets took root

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imagining wild strawberries in monochrome the summer squall

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fevered peaches in a Delftware bowl

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page after calendar page the eternal green of my yellowing return

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on the rez children outline hand-turkeys in purple mountain’s majesty

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she mouthed olive juice into her dirty martini

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an old chestnut: he gives the fortune teller his birthdate oh it’s cancer

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banished sound. red violets everywhere hillside

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believing in the resurrection she dyed hen eggs robin’s egg blue

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dandelion tea. the kettle expectorates its soul into a sunbeam

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one last huff of indigo he became an easterly breeze among the Western Ghats

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past her season worms in Granny Smith

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illiterate they wondered why their gangrene was yellow

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a balloon untethered from the world the bloated boy’s red shirt

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many Frenchmen gored William of Orange burned his love letters

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their absence outlined. carnations yet

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a geophagist, he admired the lesser strata of the macaroni and cheese

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eh spring. an accordion takes its first and last breath

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avoid the westerly halls panopticon of the plum pudding

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my grandmother has such well hung wisteria

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landscape an alphabet, too: roving cloud-shadow over ruins of the Turquoise City

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cloistered in an English castle a mahogany writing desk emits a creak of recognition for Zumbi dos Palmares

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quiet pasture the singular cornflower overpunctuates

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Alexander! Hephaestus for gold Hephaestion for golden showers

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sacred ground even the heat yellow-orange on stilts

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of earth’s real name each periwinkle cups one syllable

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(mauvelous leaned unused in the box and would remain so)

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at the salamander social he left me scarlet

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fathoms deep the non-vertebrae of Sepia apama staircase into dream

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full of kelp and saltwater the body went on tanning

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from an Alpine peak Magenta half-elsewhere

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where the eye ends a threshed brown field a threshold


Walter Ancarrow lives.