even middle school means in-between

the sound comes in tinny and wholesomely
empty, but I don’t
mind. I can pretend
better than the other kids

and match the silver crayons with
awkward little sentences
when I’m called out for
faking a yawn–

mind you, there’s no such
squealing dog
but your own leftover wildness
hiding behind some back door

and even that went to bed
with the loons, breaking the sky
with fearless petals and a tinkering
bracelet I hushed years ago.

Mother

I will not have you tremble inside
my rolling pin arms. With
these, whose business it is
Not to flatten but groove
the earthlike glade into.

See, you have no idea what I’m talking about.
Who can I give this metaphor?
The fungus gnats or fruit flies found
their way in again, almost had me
take the oregano to the cold.

I could not slap them,
the little specks of beast,
and so they’ll have to hover
broadly in dusty sunlight.
That’s what it’s like to live in a window.

They leave you wishing more,
more than buffer flour
spread atop kitchen tables careening
pizza dough, more than the warmth
pressing gently from the glass.

heels

Down the concrete street I stroll
with rhythmic clicks of solid soles;
I’m chiming out a headstrong knell,
I knock the ground in tepid hell.

Stride along in pronounced form
announcing that my head is warm,
Keep to the right! I’m coming through!
We shift in fear of a noisy shoe.

In the library, do I dare?
I am blessed! We have carpets here!
But I walk alone in awkward lengths,
hearing just heels’ laments.

No one smiles as I pass,
I’d rather flit in quiet grass.

[no other obligations]

no other obligations.
in the watching window above the kitchen sink,
steam rises and parts around the faucet
up and up steadily
around knotted hands.

water spread on the counter
glistens.
For a lifetime, they are all little suns.

if it is a world all on its own–
the light, the water, the pink countertops
splayed causally in kitchen heart astronomy–

a small flash of red/yellow/blue/white
appears from below the faucet head,
Then drops;

The family is discussing paid leave.
All this spontaneous fog seems right,
Ominous as it is

dark, so streetlights and ocean
blur into endless mire,
It makes sense

Why you vaguely see their eyes
from your island stool.

unsure what to do with that grapefruit

and before the shine let the the ice grow cold,
a juice ran down my hand. a sweet sour sticky
grapefruit juice ran down the valley in my dry
knuckles. And there it stayed, shimmering in its
proud and unannounced little loop, shimmering because
the snow from the week before was on its way down
the street, finally releasing from its cold little pile
of a hug, glittering a beady eyed shine so full
of itself, and so full of anything else
that isn’t the cold, the cold that stays
as night comes and tells us to wait
until the morning to cut up
the next grapefruit.

[opening the lid on dreams]

opening the lid on dreams,
anti-light pours in.

We shake ourselves out
as if dragged down a steep flight of stairs,
as if undoing the work of blue/black waves.

We shake ourselves again
into our legs, into our eyes.

In sleep, light is negative. The blinds
bleed a blue/black/green friendly
ooze. Your arms glow, even
if you’re missing some fingers.

It’ll be made of moving parts:
tops and floaters and stars
into and around your hand,
a phantom pillow attached to your face.

But slowly, you move, slowly so you can’t
remember yourself, or
as if your real body can’t let you
reach the door, can’t let you
off the ground, can’t let you see
if the sirens are for your friend.

banana bread

that unmistakable smooth yellow fruit
pounded into a loaf shape
like flour and water and sugar
is still calling me
from crusty bits of chocolate.

Calling me because
there’s been a misfire
in someone’s neurons.
There’e been a misfire
in how the hose fits the radiator,
spraying antifreeze through the front.
There’s been a misfire in how I remember
the smooth taste of pumpkin, mashed in
chocolate chips, and how long
since you last made my favorite bread.

But that’s life, you’d say,
I’ve been busy,
you know.

I agree. We’re all too busy
trying to fit the stars in their correct
shapes, trying to plug up the little holes
in the curtains.
Either that or the dust will get to it first.

It’s not right, you know,
how we’re always looking at bananas upside down.
We wouldn’t know. We didn’t pick them,
didn’t climb the trees, didn’t wait for it to ripen,
didn’t enjoy the banana before it turned brown.
We’re failures as monkeys, after all.