Tethered

I want to run. I
Can’t. This collar on my neck
Catches me, holds me

Down. Each time it bites
My flesh, my spirit falls, I
Despair the hope of

Liberty. It will
Be for me no noose, but will
Become my anchor.

This is where I plant
My cornerstone, where I will
Build my strong tower.

Aeolian

I learned how to see

Auras this week. Not read them;

I see clear haloes

Of shimmering flux

Above people’s heads. Today,

We operated

On a very sick

Woman. Her aura clung to

Her, and after she

Had anesthesia,

It rose to fill the ceiling

Of the OR. When

We waited to start

The surgery, I implored

Her silently to

Stay, just a little

Longer, not to leave us here

On earth alone. I

Hope she listened. She

Will awaken soon; my heart

Cannot bear more death.

Railways

I got on a train.
I climbed to the top row and
Tried to find a place

To sleep. At last found
I a spot, on the advice
Of a mother and

Daughter. Quickly as
The train started to chug, I
Spilled from my seat to

The floor. This was not
A passenger train, but for
Livestock and cattle.

For years I had tried
To stand off from the herd, and
With them I would die.

Eve

We were his pets. He kept us like rabbits. We saw what he wanted us to.

There could have been a light shining in my face and I wouldn’t see it.

Now I think of him as the Gardener. He was one among many. Elohim is plural.

Then came the Word. It came from a little guy I had never seen before. He had a really big nose, his eyes were set far back in his skull, broad shoulders with little arms, and he had a bun on the top of his head.

He said, “Nachash!” I came over to him. He crawled up a tree and whispered to me: “Yodea.

Elohim ki beyowm akalkem mimenu wenpquehu enekem wihyitem kelohim yodae towb wara.”

I know, it’s more than one word when I write it like this, but those words make one word. You could say, “God knows that the day you eat it, your eyes will opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

It happened right away. It was after I heard it that I saw. The fruit was gorgeous, and I put it in my mouth, and it tasted like everything. It was like my whole body was being squeezed by delicious, it radiated to every part of me.

I looked back to Nachash, and he was hiding behind the tree. I felt like he was a part of me now, changing me, opening me. I saw the world made and unmade, a million times over. A deep love filled me.

I went and found Adam, who had named all the animals, but hadn’t given me a name yet. I was like the Word now, and I said it to him. He could have been born in that moment, he changed so much. He saw me for the first time. He saw that I was made of him, for him, and we wanted each other so badly.

He took me in his arms, and our love, it made something beautiful, we created it in that moment. We were like God. His arms, his sweat, my breasts, it was joyous and gentle and strong.

We finished, and he filled me with the most wonderful kind of water, warm and full of life. I was full, too. I tasted the water, and it was sweet, a little sticky.

Then we heard the Gardener. He threw Nachash out, and said he’d have to crawl on his belly and eat dirt. Then he threw us out.

Me and Adam covered ourselves and went out into the world. He named me Eve, which is a funny joke. Eve means “mother” but also “serpent,” like Nachash.

The Word was still good, but it hurt now. I wanted to be with Adam all the time; he could get really mean sometimes. We work it out. We have time now, not like before, where everything happened at once.

I’m going to hold this Word in my heart. Maybe I’ll share it with one of my kids, if they’re good.

To the Boy

Your mother did not
Neglect you because you were
Wrong, she did because

You were the part of
Herself that she neglected.
You are the part of

Her that always knew
What was right, but suppressed it,
For the feelings of

Others. The pathos
And gratitude you see in
That photo is her

Embracing her truth.
Your parents sought to preserve
You by keeping their

Evil away. Lonely,
But insulated. The best
That they could offer.

Ham and Noah

Dad got drunk last night.
I saw his real face. Ugly,
Petty, cruel; oh, so small.

Pretend like nothing
Happened. That’s what we always
Do. I can’t; no.

I’m burning up. To
Keep silent will be a chain
On my children’s necks.

Ever bound to do
What he did, whether they want
To or they do not.

I refuse to serve,
To perpetuate this lie;
I will go, alone.