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A Day–In Parts

Awake in an iron bed  
Cold, fuzzy, antiseptic  
Silence is an ornament  
Where silence was once a room.  
Night blends in red  
With a glorious nightmare.   

A tower is built of steel girders  
Its inhabitants grow poised within steel  
And its lives and bodies, minds and feelings  
Flow into the mold of steel.  

A stool dreams of being a cloud:  
A puzzle appears as a wound:  
A failure (of some sort) or a cheat  
It could be that Eden burned down;  
It could be that human nature  
Is at odds with the human condition–  
And all there is to do is wear your skin.  

A strange species bears babes in winter
Among the hides of jealous Earth.
Green emerges in the black–and gray
Deburrs a bleak whatever-scape.

Satiable curiosity; punctuality; good example;
Torn in two: torn to ribbons: torn to bits: spit split.
How can we resist an invitation to medicine?
Electronic senses hunger stuff–
Vagal swoon–Sweat cold shock–
Passed out with a thought balloon in hand.

I smooth my hair, wanting to look graceful, stranded.
An
 aerodynamic ton
Anyone would want to flee this lonely place,
But some cannot

The smell of pastels
Chalk–velvet yellow stroke
Across a textured page
I pine for her smallest hand strokes–
A brush with blue (she knows)
I want to trust her with    dearest raw materials.
She will press a puff to blur lines into the foreground.

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“A Day in Parts” originally appeared as part of a collection in Instinct: Poems

published by Bright Hill Press.

Available at ABE books.

“Broken Dam” is a digital painting by the author, Joanna Straughn

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