Christian Ruiz Berman, Rites of Passage, 2016
Mixed media on shaped panels with birch dowels and hydrocal inlay
58 x 36"

I approach you in a hallway.
you are well dressed.
you tell me the distance between a crane’s-bill and a geranium.
the distance is New Zealand.

I approach you in a hallway. you are wearing
a purple shirt with checks. you tell me
the difference between my joy and our life. I don’t want
it in my house.

the hallway has windows. raging. the weather
is seizing in the window and the wall next to the window
is white paint. is calm.

I approach you in the hallway and I tell you the difference
between your shirt and the calmness of white paint.

the tide is flecked with sand and it looks
like gold iridescing in a dust as the water comes in.

you approach me in the hallway and I am glad
for the quiet of your entrance. I tell you
there has been an error.

the depth of your hair and the shirt
you left in the bathroom that is filled with
the depth of your smell of
a kind. the private direction. up and left.

boxes robed in white paint. a liquid separating
from the contained particulate. you have been always
so particular in your shirts. the box is
particular in its directions.

I approach for the steadiness of a hand.
I missed you this morning in my way
of moving outward toward the ocean.

I tell you the time for arrangement is soon. I approach
a mussel, opening the shell to show the ridges of
its dog-lips. there is a peacrab, small and whole,
feeding from its gills.


Kelly Hoffer