Sunday, March 30, 2014

Poem: Egress


Careering into a phalanx one is
wise to take a breath.
Remove all thoughts, check a map.

            You asked me for a toothpick.
            I gave you one.

Destruction, liberation.
We build our traps and fall in love.

            You asked me for a bottle of glue.
            I gave you one.

Look for the button next to the steel jaws.
Remember that you have a thumb.

            You hinted.
            I certainly love toothpicks.
            I adore bottles of glue.

The fetal position is nothing if
not designed for comfort.

            Whenever I could, I brought you
            toothpicks, bottles of glue.

But walking demands that the
soles of your feet face the earth.

            Rummaged through flea markets,
            thrift shops, hardware stores.

You might fall.
You might run, dance, jump, cavort.
The odds are good.

            Ate at steakhouses.
            Slipped toothpicks into my pockets.

Would it help if I kicked you in the ass?

            And now

            You have built a
            cage entirely of toothpicks.
            You could smash it with a
            kick, but you won’t.
            You’ve put in too much
            sweat, care, patience.
            It’s a work of art.

            But perhaps you should have
            built it from the outside.

From the collection Fields of Satchmo
Photo by MJV

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