fresh paint

i'm as impatient as webbed frog hands.
i don't take my shoes off inside
in case there's a need for running away.
keep the windows unlocked. talk wildly 
to strangers. open their palms & write
my telephone number & say, "in case
you ever need anything." call me your 
pocket knife. i'm ready to peel an apple
or a heart. i'm as impatent as a fortune
& in patient too. wearing a hospital gown
all the to church. pew is both a place
to become a treasure & the sound a gun makes.
i could lie & say i didn't read the sign
but i wanted to touch. each morning 
a man comes from my past to paint 
my wall. sometimes, if i'm good, 
he'll let my choose the color. 
sometimes, if i'm good, the wall will 
refuse to dry & i can press my whole hand
into the color. i collect my own hands
like state quarters. what would you do
if you could see all the ribbons 
from your hands strung out around the room?
i try to untangle them. it's really no use.
better to accept paint & knots.
do you remember when i showed you 
my closet full of clocks? well,
truthfully, only some of those were clocks.
most were just waitings. how long until
the next coaxt. i'm as impatient
as an ambulance bird. i'm as impatient as
an ice sculpture self portrait. 

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