Today's poem is by Mary Austin Speaker


Triangulation means
each one leans
upon the other.

A mountain triangulates
gravity, compression,

An arrow pointing up.
The shape of eros
has three points.

Symmetrical objects
and a slender row
between them.

What came before,
what comes after,
the infinitely possible now

We travel like this:
origin, presence,

An element of air travel
is impenetrable mystery.
A matter of belief.

To value the diamond
is to value the translation
of compression

into reflection and light.
Darkness compacted
until it is no longer dark.

The diamond can withstand
more heat than anything
in the world.

Diamonds are cut
into triangles, tiny pyramids,
the cleanest plateaus.

Shadows triangulate themselves:
Origin, disappearance, horizon.
A headstone ticks off hours.

Diamond cuts are named
softly: cushion, pear,

Anything with three legs
can balance. Anything
with joints can crouch, spring.

On Mount Graham,
giant optic lenses
orchestrate the thrust

of rockets.
Ready, aim, fire.

a remote control
for a laser beam
secreted behind a door

which is like
all the other doors.
A hallway of infinite possibility.

A compression
of surprise,
intention, dread.

Hydrogen + methane
+ charged particles
= carbon rain.

False diamonds are grown
from crystal seeds like plants—
The crystal structure repeats

and repeats,
carbon atoms falling
into the most exquisite lines.

The eve of departure:
a point with three values:
past, present, future.

The day fades away,
tourmaline deepening
to sapphire.

In the morning
all color is gone
from the sky,

as though it has been
scrubbed clean.
Diamonds are such

fine conductors
for sentiment, power, rage.
Imagine a surface so flawless

it becomes invisible.
Imagine a surface
with a mountain beneath it.

Copyright © 2011 Mary Austin Speaker All rights reserved
from New Orleans Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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