Lean Into It

I have this disease. It involves perching at parties like some dark owl and slowly shifting into a circling vulture. But I’ve cracked a couple things like bones against a cliff. For one, every body is a capsule—a collection of lighters, lucky pennies, and pocket lint. And two, there’s no way for me to, reach into you and stretch into your fingertips like gloves. It's all in the synapsing—the way the fluid of your inner ear reflects the swishing of vodka in your stomach. Your evening is an arch, brought to you by the white round pill that carves you out in parabola. Still, there is no hearing. There is the outside world and then the way your ear canals whisper into your mind. All but your voice—which is softest when you have the most to say.

Copyright © 2018 by Emily Hunerwadel. This poem originally appeared in Professional Crybaby (Poetry Society of America, 2018). Used with permission of the author.