sometimes i open the door to the cellar
to find it full of thimbles or jars
of peanut butter. the basement wants
to swallow our ankles. hoards history
like a museum. smell of earth & worm worship.
the children go then to do our work.
lift everything again for the depths.
find messages in bottles & jars
of baby teeth & braid of hair
shed by travelers. everyone knows
a basement is a place a monster goes
to undo his skin. a place where banshees
let their tongues rest as newts & snakes.
where fathers take their children to teach them
about saws & hammers. callouses
that grew like beetles on our backs.
he ate handfuls of dirt. fed us the same.
you can only repeat the nightmare
so many times before it becomes a place.
i basement myself once a day at least now.
embrace the violet & terror. a basement says,
"you are going to need to change species."
i pour out all the plums from my feet.
sacrifice a bird to keep the abyss from
opening wide & gash-like. find zippers
in the soil. where to pull & reveal
a bag to sleep in. a guitar case.
witched instruments that play. the worst was
the time it was full of mirrors. so many
version of my fear dancing merri-go-round
in the dark. hoisting each & making sure
they did not break. we burried them
beneath the catacomb tree. insects still burrow
to go & look at themselves a thousand ways.