08/23

for my envy of bicycles & other methods 

the herd of stolen bicycles 
take a detour through my house at night
where i am again trying to sleep
to the sound of rain. not real rain,
just a sound machine. the real rain
is too busy flooding my parent's basement 
& sitting patiently in the faucet.
in the basement there is a vortex 
all pulsating & purple. a great big bruise
where all the loneliness seeps through.
hence the bicycles. hence the pigeons.
hence the ships in bottles that arrive
without warning on my shelves.
have you ever tried to sleep your body away? 
i go with just a sheet
& sometimes the sheet becomes a flag
if i'm not careful. you'll have to guess
what kind of flag. the bicycles leave tire marks
which all look like snake trails.
wrangle the imagination. not snakes.
just bikes. the last time
i thought too much about snakes
i found a huge python waiting in my tub. i said, 
"guess i'm not taking a shower."
my grandmother died when i was still a girl
& so did my aunt so in a sense 
they belong to someone else.
i use one of the stove burners to rest
my green bananas on & i toss & turn
worrying what would happen if it turns on.
i would have a pile of slugs. 
do you ever envy bicycles? they're like
small horses. i envy horses most of all.
when they run the world crumples.
i've never seen this i just assume.
have you seen their eyes? i'm affraid 
someone will knock on my front door.
i stand up in bed & stare at the far wall
until it goes murky. i write too many poems
about not being able to sleep
but here is where i live. i tell the ambulance
i don't want to be saved tonight
not yet & plus that's too expensive.
leave the bicycles to take care of me.
maybe i can catch one as it passes.

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