i'm losing points for cheating.
checking the work of previous monsters.
he follows me with a criteria.
this is how to be examable.
i put my palms face-up on the table.
are you good enough to be a statue today?
my mouth fills with ink. i still have dreams
of four cornered rooms where
every voice is mercury. i try & try
to solve a number sentence
but the answer is always zero.
how easy would it be to just
sit on my knees & ask god
for a bolt of lightning. burning
the old text books. filling in the letter "b"
for every single answer. he crosses
his arms. this is all too on the nose
isn't it? but i am telling the truth.
this man lives with me. has a square jaw.
does not have a father or a mother.
when given power, is a body
still it's matrix of blood & hallways?
i think not. i think we can become
obelisks. i'm losing letters.
i'm failing basic skills.
this is a pie graph of my face.
25% my father 30% left over
& the rest unaccounted for.
do not ask me to math. "i am trying"
i tell him which we both know
is unknowable. i live in
a series of thresholds. here is where
i pass. there is where
i start to become too weird
for the word "mingle." really,
i try to usually not cheat but
we all write the answers
on our thighs sometimes, right?
my opinion is invent whatever you need
to make it through the seams.
everything is sewn shut.
even the exam room. the proctor
gets a drink of water from the sink.
doesn't take his eyes off me
as he swallows. his washing machine eyes.
he blinks before we both curl
like dead leaves. he says,
"you have minutes left." i can't focus
the dream is a suitcase now.
i am filling it with tomorrow.
testing booklets arrive only as birds.
he is gone. i am eating a bowl of cereal.
the sun is printed on white paper.