A trail of orange maggots feasting on your potted plants.
The paint peeling from a gap in the walls where rain
rudely sidled in. Dust camouflaging the top of your bureau.
Mail like the Leaning Tower of Pisa. A poem
at a standstill, your words like dough deprived of yeast.
The collision of artifacts in your garage.
Sunlight decimating the butter dish.
The closet bulging at the seams.
Your heart, an obstacle course of apology and need.
The front door swollen at the corners,
laundry from your trip barring the beeline to bed.
A freezerful of meals you’ll never eat,
your mind a hamster wheel of what ifs,
the mirror wagging her finger at your deficits,
the way you hum yourself to sleep
with your catalog of solitudes.
The broken handle, spent light bulb, unsalvageable
zipper, cracked dishware, dismantled belief,
hope hiding under a thick blanket of complaint,
how you accumulate what needs discarding,
how you forgive what needs to witness pain,
loss disguising as regret, yearning masking as contentment,
a stain you scrub until your hands are raw,
shoes too precipitous for the long city blocks,
the toaster that keeps burning your breakfast,
fault lines of an earthquake you know is coming,
how you shoulder against sadness, the lies
you tell to gloss over your rubble, the pair
of pants you are safeguarding in the closet
when your body decides, for once, to cooperate,
the stories of your heroic triumph or tragedy,
the dark sky you hold back with the fluorescent glare
of your kitchen, the pages of the book
you fall asleep to but never finish,
the dull newsreel rolling in your mind,
all that evidence of your unmagnificent living.
When are you going to put it all down?
When will you pluck yourself from under the terrible spotlight
you insist on training your disrepair, your unfinished business?
When will you refuse your own brutality?
When will you decide each chapter of your feeble existence
has exhausted itself of endings?
Let it be now.
Let this unheralded night signal
the death of your diminishment.
Let this unremarkable hour
celebrate the close
of every incompletion.
Let this ordinary moment deliver amnesty
from your imprisonment.
Let your body open
to the freedom it can’t even begin