I Can See the Furniture

William Keckler
1 min readFeb 20, 2023


People are making furniture
merely by sitting on rocks.

The first furniture, moon-like,
is pocked and cratered
like the years themselves.

Then the people are busy shaping
bits of trees into legs and backs.
Let us sit stiffly as our minds.

We’ll stare at each other
from various thrones
and see what happens.

Some people fall in love with curves,
and ask, can we have them soft, and yes.
The furniture of clouds arrives.

We soon exhaust the line itself.
We crave novel materials, intelligence
in the thing that holds us
more than our lover does,

more than we hold our children.

One day, looking at furniture,
we realize, glumly, how little has changed.
If we are honest with ourselves.

You watch a war happen in a phone
in the palm of your perfect hand
while waiting for dinner.

Some autumn thought keeps eluding you.
You look out the window at the thing
the trees are doing with the leaves.

Is it pretty to be trapped in seasons
beyond your control? They repeat.
You repeat. The meal is ready,

and it’s your favorite. For a moment,
you forget what that is. Then you see it
arrive from the future, like the past.



William Keckler

Writer, visual artist. Books include Sanskrit of the Body, which won in the U.S. National Poetry Series (Penguin). https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/532348.