Jodi Johnson


Jodi Johnson

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From The Pity Room - BOOK I 
                                               {For You, νέµειν}

                                             Italian Peninsula, 1850

In a style faction your daybook's alberatura a pimiento-red as if a raw and gore venture
in jook with its backland tabular not stock, sky outrages in patter tippery the dab rye grass

summer of flower at the eyeline in halt, and on the shore part-grey bluff off-crimson
put in almost ambush. You and alone, prima nemesi, you over your annal of drawdowns, 

its prim, its nicks and notes down of the almost-hunker in drought – figures the late-low
the sheet water just for a hincher to drag its trap enough, and your hand's record dour

then its waver to a script and plush aglee, at once in its flail-at-lish the punctilio off
astray to listello. The wind at trill; at such a trill your first-footing a faux a barely heel-panning

new drift, your instep inelegance as if in the droop world's ritenuto half from glissando 
like a softbox you, and on, on to the full beat of a chuisle, onto hill-farther the weight

flensed meat the bells, each bell's fall of birds the Sabbath rendering like a struck-to-bass pegtop
put to arousal on the wide but sparse the land's tonsura. To che che a gathering and you, you

with a gathering all in its pallthrough with their holdbox for portrait, at its siding the anvil damage
annulment of rain going against its tenure, drought against the preen fission of rawland pedigree, 

you rough-new a flame-ream from your cantata like salvage between the offset and overwhelm
sonum per sepulchra regionum, then in your various stations, dies irae, dies illa, governance

in its truant-becoming long broach from the runs of the slicecock capon onto the all-tow
then blown tailoring of your outshirt, an eloquence of your variable your tender range

like the tight-to batten of your bangle-set, onto the organ stop of your scarf ring a pulled
a drawn a colour trick, chroma its cream-something in a portamento and overslick. Out out, 

out here with the faithful and you, you later in your irredeemable your river-sink tenor
like a hasp undone, the tongue's knap on a door into water. The hard the thunder jacks

flit-in then flush calligraphy, light the chase already in its travel-strip finery land not famous
but tulle: woodrush its dew-luzulae, on an arc firmrealm of light a bisbilgio of lavender

classic all-aerated terraces; the notitia ranks them in an entire complicity, all carriers 
of the false the gone en theos. You bringing out the colour sets of the ground, you bringing

night olea, your name in blood on the book the night olea. You the searlet and the fireblight 
you at compline, in your isolation something for yourself salvo jure, a willowbit known hard

against the fear of death: that there is nothing to intercede against; that there is everything
to intercede against through your arioso's corer and darkstocker like a declination between 

twin my twin, the clef modulated as if unset, unstrapped and loose: your garter fluxes then off
like the afterfact unsealing of the codicil - hail and privation, samphire off-reaches

and the lightship when from offshore it nectarises. Where there was difficulty, once a marital 
levying sleek with its braze wan glint only wanting the gaunt-filling trucing fuse of joint constancy

once mutual the entire scope, now the gradients of the past probated where the self brings 
self-recusing discontentments of prefigurement. There was such little before, the bourn left

off by the salleria, rocca sustaining its conjunctions, no proliferations beyond the end of the night
before the angle shades in their grieved pitch muted undone on your bombazine 

slow black and mourning dress - what a prison or casque that was with the breeze there
merely a pissy draught nuzzling the bunt of it, as if a wisp in your glove felt only by projecting

the sight of it, you yourself out to tender, soft-lit as intarsia through the morning codes
or the wood by the inglenook the night of your dragnetting where old resonances they tress

they tress and streel. Apprehension enough the con anima of the Mary Bell enough to strip
the parquet that reissues itself along the ongoing track of your exit; brief of your register

improvisation on the heart's penetralia. How the relic trawls are positioning to fresh, to fresh
as if from leisure the spring-batch of your renouncements, the dealings of pax festooned 

and the consummation of pausing when the complots of sorrow disinterred themselves 
euphoric as the clear-oiled steam-distilled clary, where the sated lay of honey in the vane 

was in slow endorsement eros; wineflare to it nightrushes of the memorialist. Consummation 
again and again to the hearth of the bay the breaches from your fieldwork of doublemuck,

field marks and the field notes that were stretched to the frail ends as outwash overwashing 
moraine or the stretto of the catalogue aria. To the hearth of the bay your implements

from the naval store: pamphlets on steeves, the tideland prominences in the somewhat prone
gesto that served your writing from the pen as your smallest knucklebone each night

worked the penstock of the table; at the consummation of silence disjunct was the ab extra 
burgundy rising the night where your guilt sagely once in its dun-storage in brilliance

went to prismatically expiate - gibbered through the intime of evening a transmarine
composite with flakedull cloaming, lined ilex, a stone-pined dense glade. Gust on hemp steeping

the gross of trespass, and the game-bag unloaded: maror, troy weights of paolos, as if bridgeset
punti di raccordi, point de Venise à réseau partial lacework. No use, relief,

and hosanna hosanna in its movimento libero you testing your thighs on the stela 
bluemaria nightwash, then the novel louche of it as you were carried gone and boxed 

like an aspic in egg trick across the season's praise batch of still-and-always calendula,
brome patching then the saltpan of the porch in its calm dead system. In alias of your death

slip-appearances devoutly from the altars of contumely - shock of it. Out to the moonwood 
with its dispiriting enterprises, times mind switches err to cease the never-logic of concision

while trancelands go as amble as jabot or your body in the sump. Elsewhere, strips of the red 
wheelwork on the fixtures of the door, a new colour that is the almost exactly trailing 

skins of birds, the kingfisher turned out on the stringline dead, and the storm coming full
its wet envies – on the line the breast in its strafe north, and I am back from the market vinegar.

You say I am back from the mess of grana. I have drowned this, that. Colourfast tin the lantern 
outside filtered airing from the hedgework, the windfall's curious gala into the sudden the entire

grace of abeyance. I with some middling livery worth, lame-left on the cutlanes unblessed
and not to mastery - night goes weak with carrydown to gunshots insubstantial for the woodlost

in the reflection-conversant false audit, where for you the cinderfall dearths against the limber
unknowing of you as if rose differentials in the cup. The deficients are foaling in the wane, imposture 

your fiat that it was all of God, that it could not be withstood. All over the fire-setting
opening of seams, barrow-graves and hawks-at-seel, once the sill the year's early burnet,

wall in its trellis and bird, your hand by yours on the weld-yellow inplate of the weatherglass
a slow pushing fathom of its runnel, valley separable to sea-clearing, overburdens, rushlights'

pitch-at-glim then evening feature-through of prospecting, hushings for ore. Hive and razz 
you restive to cleaving, moon through the close-year of Paranatellonata, as many as the beech

the flail at Dodona, in seethe from the desk high-lit birding nesting maps, silence then the pacing
pacing clean neck of the nightjars mothing. Love in the pandects to love in memory gone runic:

you to so-sternly through, not gathering for peaceable years of lustrum and the peaceable 
rank focal stages to bring abatement to, in you power sizing beyond the foundry of itself

awkward the stepwise discontinuity of you to hyperradiate and then compositionally devastate
sobersided in the late the evasives with your body colour off grisaille as your joy in lightlaning

the coal-glim leverlights. Zero at-quell, cleat through everything in disfashion prim estates
into the shelterwoods in failure, pat slim the cliff oil houses and daylights in opulence

dark from a timing a pushing off lazurite. Go delve: trophy rooms the last prim chintz summer 
calla samesuch as arum screened and in anger oilcloth on deal. That you would equate to attain

to make acquaintance and of the similar make the strange, to put the heart at adjunct then in fleet
its adjunction disposed from compeer, one's disposition to purpose the off-equal failure yours 

recanting from axis, from the axis the declensions of the covetous, to covet to repudiate
odd-even a negligence then in cession your voice tapers on dais and its be-leed irregular

sophistication a blown-floriate. Once restemmed, esteemed; once proclivitous, in wine proclivities 
exceeding - you in wordstock going strange as the lion in private ministry upon you beyond Bethel

as the calve-beat, then en point slowly your deliberate baisse longtake brevis to my cheek, 
when I would wake caught amiss. When you said extraneous a late you in our garden fixed tacit

before lilac, well it was a hewn thing in that blaze and askance houring, denial in ornamenting as 
indirection in your palm houseleek for lightning, for the severance arenas nothing, nothing in

averring silence the holding figures reeve into the bulk decarating of your palate, perché la somma 
era in notazione, non scritti per esteso - yet you in letter from disaster, exemplar, unmanageable: 

from the distal you to the you set at principal, ad alterum se conferre the interdependences 
lunations of indiscretion, figure-rushes and in forwardness inflorescences, and myself somewhat

in the good and gathering in your sickness full from eminence to lemon and wine off fodder
red-clover. I did and I was proud. When what goes carries, chartered and is simple, is damage

is so lessoned even the branches were carding put treble and inverted, tautened, heaved 
partisaned to radiant and the air-rill of knowing. At once schemer and fit-in, all your ascensions 

with stilting grim the stiff and faff now: principles and charters, tellings, counters on virtue, the bitter 
yet when at your pleasance my off-sun standard of obsession you lionised in the statergold 

the graces exponentials, the spirit in-helm. Labarums, reductions, falsifications in the grabs
drags of you, suffusements, emotions, your name men flayed of you into their pleasurable rebus

and grand episteme of you: racemes, cymes, in terms of your grace your modes of asunder aestivations 
through vernations, an affective not in reason. Your remit: everything: in the tantra 

birth-lettered Alpha, in the Styx recircling in Alpha, in the reentered evocations wall tenors of atria
and my saying Father, let this cup pass me by, undress the sail against distress and shoring. 

Where drops and callows, where of you pleasure is as galling - the final night-matter of his stay; 
the piplamps heed, tank, and stow. Myself in false name half-hung, contiguous turn haver upon it: 

you at first sight: you at the bellrope across the transombar - the interlock the fireplains and lack
my grass-fathering, I was havering in the bole and cross palpations, in the bole and the pressures 

and there was glory and there was glory onsetting, and it was to spiritualise, to arrange to absolute.
If I gave you sorrow, weak-points or confusions, I gave with the conditions, ideas, recensions

lavishments out of sorrow, so you recede none with reckoning; waiting is in the assent of absence,
the trees' chalk and ironic forest stayed on your prie-dieu - it was nankeen-wrapped a dull rue 

the broadleaves all in their italic westerlies like brandy snifters tipped and re-tilted,
posed as the marasca's pock-pock cherry-in-abacus - a gift on your matrimonio bianco

its impresa a crave rose where its grained feint-lines were the water-blues extenuating
against you going through in your gammy segue into a new sea an immersed felo de se

The fields in blister, the lake's seiche an augury or parse, storm-up as it slinked then into
a floose slunk, renegotiating like a band-rete a chuisle a chuisle – it was your child-dream:

the bucked stone of the parpen with its aster plaiting, everywhere replete with her young motifs
she was coming up on her fingers soil from the thumbpush seedbedding, rosaio rosaio

madre, and each night takes the saint's oil belletto and cherry ring from his finger to line it 
squarely on the prompt of your navel's vide infra almost a misheard at-slant primigravida

Jodi Johnson

Jodi Johnson is a N. Irish poet, born in County Derry. He is a graduate of Oxford and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. He's had poems published in London’s The Wolf, and work solicited by the U.S. magazine The Nation. He is currently working on his first book, which is set in 19th Century Italy at the time of the Risorgimento.