Saturday, March 18, 2006



You should see what I found in my navel

showering the other night. Or

maybe excavating is the better word.

No matter. It had been, I think,

a squirrel before it stopped being one.

Right there in the shoddy slipknot

tying off my stomach. Often

before this discovery, I had imagined

one could carefully untie

that closed off tunnel, locus for the tether

of my umbilical, which somewhere

my mother keeps in a little gold box.

It looks like a scab, the dried hank

of that which connected us in the rosy dark.

Looking at it, I felt vaguely faint.

Not as if there was nausea

in my future, though the present

was decidedly up for debate.

I felt like my body was falling through

the floor of itself, bones

leaving behind the sketchy shadows

of bones, my teeth impostors,

my hands reaching for motes

of my life salting the air.

I have already forgotten

the squirrel that died within me.

Maybe it was some never before seen

form of parthenogenesis,

parts of me desperate to escape

my life in order to birth

their own, identical lives.

I’m filled with the sad pride of a parent.

Maybe this will hurt me

more than it will hurt you,

darling clumps of cells

now loose in the calamitous weather of gravity.

What was I saying before

sadness scooped me up

in its funnel cloud mouth?

I was telling you how clean

I have become, how white,

how smooth, how utterly indivisible,

how much more myself.

If you do not recognize me, good.

If you cannot see me,

even in the light, better still.

If you cannot touch me, you can begin to forget.

No comments: