“the washing-machine repairman asks
if I’ve saddled my sons with biblical names
on purpose the plumber presses me to admire
his sculptures the electrician wonders
if I have skills in patent law the driver
of the propane truck desires geographical
wisdom the contractor inquires about the fashions
“It’s 11 pm and death is on my mind,
accidents upon accidents, blood and gore
somewhere in the streets, she
is the time passing and sick, invading dark
people gone missing—could she have been?
No, says my sister, but she’s young and has no power
over things we can’t trust and things we can’t see.
I’m young and have no power, am small, never win
but I check the empty driveway, look up at the sky line…”
“…We refuse the bruises of blood,
we want to honor the thrust of history, the trust
inside each splitting cell, so we wrap ourselves
within each other, away from the constant sirens.
We fumble our flesh, our mouths wide enough
to swallow the world…”