On the wrong side of a continent
which the origami of my heart
has never learned to fold, or on the shore
of islands whose names made my heart catch, oh!
when I had not traveled and learned
that no country is far and fabled
when you get there, or where the scented oil
gathers my hands and your chest together –
on any of these crumbling banks,
with the cold rain rattling, and summer
just a story to soothe the children –
is it too late
to stop the dapper Mephistopheles,
to refinance my soul, consolidate
its mortgage, amortize the beating
of my under-capitalized heart?
House within house, roof under roof:
oh darling! Where tabs and slots of flesh
are fitted and rocked, where happiness
is sold by weight, because (you know, my dear)
contents may settle – I hear
the splatter of the wind against the shingles,
the push of tiny, restless, chitinous feet –
I feel the waste, the coming-on of war.