My skin scores easily, so
you can write notes with your fingernails.
(Messages are supposed to be more discreet than that,
writing more disguised.)
Buy milk scratched onto my chest, and
don't forget doc appt 11 wed on my thigh.
A great squashed sun spurts light across the sky.
Fish dart for cover. Shadows slide on pavement.
My shoulders hunch, anticipating.
Sky building on sky, blue hollows,
dirty snow and white snow
I stop on the sidewalk and can't start again
under that towering ark. Two of everything but me.
The high buildings rock gently
against its jumbled hull.
Slack water. Air trickles through the canyon
of Broadway, turns, runs weakly down Tenth,
stirring the syrupy leaves. I must go on, but above me
is that huge moored disaster of a vessel
hanging like the memory of manslaughter,
and at my feet small crawling things
I must not step on. If I lift a foot
I'll never be able to set it down again.
Send word I will not make it home with the milk.
Cancel the doctor. I've come as far as I can.