Published on Academy of American Poets (https://poets.org)


My Psychic

has a giant hand
          diagrammed in front of her place
on West Tennessee.
          It towers above a kudzu hill as if
     to offer a cosmic How!
               as in Hello! from a long
way off, as in how

she already knows
          the sundry screwed up ways a day
can go days before
          I park my wreck on the hill again beside
     her white Mercedes. O
               little slice of Lebanon!
O cedar scented

cards fanned like feathers
          of a Byzantine peacock! Tell
me again how I
          might have been a fine lawyer, that I’ll raise
     four kids in Tallahassee, how
               I married—it’s true—on
my lunch break—Yez

she took you to lunch
          okay a zeven year lunch ha ha!

Incense. Mini-shrine.
          A wagon train of chihuahuas snoozing by
     her slippers. You have anxious
               about a furniture
… I do. But
lately I’ve grown cold,

unconsoled by her
          extrasensory view. I think
—no need to speak—across
          the black tabletop, I don’t want to know
     if I’ll find a bright city,
               a room by the river, a love
I will recognize

by her dragonfly
          tattoo. O narrative of ether!
O non-refundable
          life facts! say that what happens may not matter,
     or that it matters as any
               story does when two fresh lovers
embrace the old pact

(her bra on the chair,
          his socks in the kitchen) that says
their love is level,
          unfabled, new. Level with me, tell me why
     the dogs on the floor, little
               moon fed hounds of Delphi, seem
so over it, so

done with the fleas of
          destiny. Maybe that’s the right
attitude, no need
          to ask why I’m here on a perfectly blue
     Friday, content with
               what the thin air, what the dust
motes in the light say

near the high window. I
          should’ve learned that music long ago—
O soundless number!
          O jukebox of being that the dogs dream to! No
     faux crystal ball, no tea leaves
               or terrace in the nether
reaches of my palm

will make her answers
          less like hocus pocus in a purchased dark.
It’s time to pay, to drive away
          from telepathic altitudes, to say adieu
     to why love ends. How
               How a heart opens again. Why
anything is true.

Credit


"My Psychic" first appeared in My Psychic, published by Sarabande Books, 2006 © James Kimbrell.

Author


James Kimbrell

James Kimbrell was born in Jackson, Mississippi in 1967.

Date Published: 2006-01-01

Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/my-psychic