by Max Kaisler

Child. The constant object was to go unseen, without detection.
               In my mother’s flat I crept from room to room,
               grieved by the heaviness of feet.

Orange piano. Out of doors you sat on the curb like a vacant house awaiting a match.

Child. I felt a twinge of kinship with baubles strung
               in shop windows, mailboxes, weathervanes.

Snail. You admired their fortitude. Saluted them with private titles of distinction.

Child. Remote with chilly Siberian luster, concealed
               in Tuesday drivel. I scuttled between hiding-
               places, rain coursing down my snout.

Telephone with cord. Over bolts of cambric many yards wide, under garage doors.

Child. Certain hours of the day disturbed me, some
               disjunction of routine and memory. I felt taken
               and rattled, like a package appraised by a child.

Puppet. Child says the child.

Child. The root of my ugliness has always been
               my willingness to be changed. Show more
               reluctance. The stuff worth praising.

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