If at first, you draft A poem, To start, you say: A yellow couch Listens to John Cage. Next, leave it With the paint cans In the cellar. In a year, or two, Go looking for it. Without reading it, Turn it over, Start something new, Like: You found me In the birdbath, The rainwater Is shirtless. That will never do. It’s best to be desperate: The universe Was swallowed By a few words. Long shadows Go to great lengths In doorways. For the better part of a decade Put it with the dry Beans in the back of The cupboard: The night arrives first A pink ribbon Of steel, A headache of honey and blood. Just abruptly end and hope no one Notices: Writing a poem Is like finishing a knot, Or cutting a hole in a net Before collecting butterflies.