by Ellen Boyette
What then, to be over, beyond
You run your tongue over only,
like an oil cloth for gunmetal,
remarks on construction, a faint
pain in sleep.
Sun declines. Every day happens.
Interfacing with somebody’s baby,
soft vowels over new air
like powder. Sun under, nonplussed
coughs up a lung, calls it a cloud.
In the matted pelt of wolf down,
maroon with earth and carcass,
you move as though
you could be so suited. Prowl
the streets followed by inaudible
tribal drum. No one looking. No one
commanding ‘hunt-gather’, extract
a strand of DNA in the wild where
no one calls it ‘DNA’ and no one
calls it ‘the wild’. Call it thinnest vine,
call it river runner. Call it spine shelter,
hide, call it cover. There are so few
ways left, aren’t there? In the morning
you’re back to buying expensive nothings
from what’s called The Container Store.
Nuancing ‘waking’ and ‘getting up’
when the screen reads Cloud Cover,
and the goose quilt tag reads
DOWN, COMFORT. As in,
command to a dog, not wrong
when you sigh between them,
impressed by only the bed that best
resembles an orthodontic mold.
You’re told that butterflies used to captivate
adolescent shut-ins like a mirror
but don’t believe it. A thin
window of plasma sells you
cutting edge plant based diets
and yet further seasons continue
to bloom and wilt in various windows,
no? Time under and over the city
gushes as though through ancient
aqueducts or reverse aquarium ventilation.
All the sleek girls in trenches
with see-through parasols opening
are covered. It’s not that
you’ve never been under
for surgery, it’s that it wouldn’t make
a difference. Billboard reading:
How much longer? tapering
with distance. The calendar is but
a chrysalis in which to bury unsurprise.
Remind me of your friend
who slept in a coffin. What was their name?