The fall, drop, break
of peach white froth
sparkling translucent curtain
screening out sun
14 stories, three seconds
from bed to bed
deep into an unlabelled narrow chasm of the past
hypnotizes five visiting on-, through-, and over-
who, passing under the fall’s lip
behind the water
put out hands to touch
fondly recalling personal crises
Two taboo white birds skim the surface
Floating back upstream
I am well worn, thumbed through, creased at the edges
Always stuck on the same page, always mid-sentence
I can neither avert my eyes, turn thoughts, nor paper
For it is my life’ s work, knowing something of what’s gone before
But no clarity as to what comes next
I live in the now of uncertainty
No future, beyond skittish dreams
My imprint is not a doer, but a fence sitter
Who cannot jump till all the jumbled pieces are boxed
But life is liquid, ebbing and flowing
Formless, seamless, perhaps meaningless
Favouring the page turners who run blindly to the next staging post
Whilst visionaries awaiting the grand vision
Are left wanting – wanting to know
Does God give us patterns?
Glimpses of the eternal to send us on our merry way
Or are we just sleepwalking into nothingness?
Weighty questions, light on answers I fear
For the doomed among us, the poor dogeared
As I reached for the organic cucumber, a woman wearing
a polka dot dress over pajama bottoms and bunny slippers
grabbed for the same one.
With our hands clutching opposite ends of the vegetable
as if it meant the difference between survival
and a slow wasting death,
we locked eyes in a grim battle
of foraging supremacy.
“Go ahead, take it,” she said, shaking her head.
“What does it matter? Who needs a cucumber?
Haven’t you heard? It’s the end times.”
Today we studied the ruins.
Your eyelashes were already a legend among the Byzantines.
Once, I believed you could read the stars,
perhaps even read your own mind.
Yet you can’t feel your own grave
rushing at you with its mouth open,
the branches of that place soaked in a green light,
the clenched teeth of the moon.
To you, I was always “Bob’s bastard,”
A reminder that someone touched her before you.
My body remembers your grease-stained, gnarled fists
smashing my pink flesh to bone.
My body remembers your steel-toed shoes
ploughing into my belly and back.
Sometimes mom begged you to stop.
Sometimes she sobbed, immobile.
Sometimes she looked away.
Though you’ve been dead for years,
You live here now.
Imprisoned in the body of the girl you despised.
Often at night,
when the sky seems as close as it does now,
and the trees tense up
as if knowing the clouds will soon break,
and the light’s an eerie shade of gray,