Byron and Browning
and Donne and Neruda
will tickle people’s noses
when I burn
er I knew you would come
to the light
is not edible
but you are
so much to chew
through your high-
I’m not like that fluffed-
the man of the house throws
an acorn at
er, umm, mmm
in my mouth
squirm a little
Possible saplings surround the parent tree. Am I parent or are you? Foreign curses swoop over my head, unsheathed, grinning. I don’t know what you’re saying but I know it is horrible. Read in closet, shelter with stories. Simplify. Breathe. Peace. Grow—armor like leafy wings. Tree, bird, sword—all these are yours, all these are you. Open—out—ah, tell me she isn’t wearing house slippers.
via Daily Prompt: Stump
Joy is a sandwich from the airport, signifying your return. The clock starts up again, like some forgotten tribal drum.
Did you miss me? Silly—I always miss you.
Where did you go? (Sprouts, cucumber, aioli, turkey. Fancy napkin) It is desert but cultivated closer to where people live. The horizon recedes.
What did you learn? The reasoning is very fine, very fine. I attended a seminar on noise, and I brought you a book about silence. Hey, let me talk to you about standard deviation.
You are washing up. Artifacts from abroad are strewn like debris. (Maps, routes, hotels, tickets) I am home because you are.
I munch my sandwich. (What is aioli? What is an ombudsperson?) Movement away from you is only movement towards, twirl like a dervish from birthday to deathday. Teach me, Agni, to look upon the unseen like an awaited face, and say: I miss you all the time.
You say, “Beware of idlers at train stations. They start fights, they beat people.” So—how shall I regard the woman thrashing on the couch, working herself up in theatrical stages? From here I can see the broken curtain and the gob of plaster poorly patching the wall. The air shivers, like the hollow around my heart, but it does not shatter.
“I’ll knife you three times, a thousand times, I’ll stamp you to death,” is the litany, followed by laughter. “I should have been an actress,” she says. She is bored, and there has to be someone to blame. The air shivers, like the hollow around my heart, but it does not rupture.
Agni has given me a boulder and a hill. I know the rock intimately: its protuberances, the way it abrades my hands, the notch it has left in my right shoulder. My foot sinks in mud or sand as I feel the thrill of nearly perfect command—jubilation hari! Without the perpetual push, I suppose I would be—
crying and laughing on the couch or an idler at the train station.
via Daily Prompt: Shiver