Wednesday, September 04, 2013

For the moments it takes to do

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I Am Of

I am of the questioning end of a wire hanger,
poking almost through the skin of my one-year
old cheek, standing resourcefully in my crib
overlooking the wooden floors my mom could
not carpet enough to break the falls to come.

I am of the upturned thumb at fourteen when the
man picked me up in his car with the magazine
open on the counsel showing naked men doing
things I did not look long enough to give detail to
but saw enough to turn the handle at the red light.

I am of the motel pool I nearly drowned in, my
young mother a few feet away and preoccupied
with drinks and deckside chat, chattering away
like teeth in winter, paddling for the side of the deep
end, a place I would find myself more often than not.

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I am of the turned knob that let me into the bathroom
where Amber was bathing and Jeri was seated and how
I saw both perfectly as their forms burned permanently
into my spacious boy’s memory as the embarrassment
flushed my face down the toilet of an excited shame.

I am of the pictures that form in my mind, overlaid
in strange mosaics that make flame weep and rivers
burn, doors in the smiling mouths of women, their
limbs curved in iconic architecture racing back to
stone and iron born in the collapsed hearts of stars.

And I am of this, this doing for the moments it takes
to do, pressing letter after letter instead of hewing canals,
or driving herd animals, or hunting wild hooflings,
beholden to others to do such things for me that I might
enjoy the shameless squander of this luxury I am so of.

Joseph Gallo
May 30, 2013

 photo I-Am-Of3.jpg

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