Monday, July 28, 2014


Crunch along a creek bed of cornflakes,
a casket bobbing in a sea of shriveled petals.
You picture a distant bathtub,
your bloated belly an island
with only one distinguishing feature:
a shallow crater filled with ticking suds.
All the water has drained out around you,
leaving only a bar of soap, a sodden rag.
Bubbles ooze from your sockets
like the compound eye of some clean insect.
Snapping turtles fill the sink,
their claws slipping on the smooth, dry porcelain.
You follow the drip stains down the drain
into darkness, holding on
to the dangling chain of the plug.
The bathroom mirror of your face
Is held together with duct tape.
The hot and cold taps are handcuffed together.
There’s a pail waiting beneath the crack
and a pan beneath the pail and a towel
beneath the pan. A vast reservoir
has been rendered undrinkable
by the proliferation of microorganisms.
A mesh of bacteria stretches
like a layer of gauze across the pond,
sticky stones and greasy reeds
and a bed sheet of algae tucked so tightly
you can’t breathe out. Peel open
one crusty eye, pry the tongue
from the roof of your mouth. Nothing around you
but dehydrated miles. Scour the scorched seed husks
for any molecule of moisture. Plunge your hands
into the crisp leaves and wash
your face in powder. Pray for a breeze
to brush you away like a fleck
of dry skin.

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