These days we are so tired
the flutter of our lids cannot take attendance —
you & I cannot see a chance for a kiss deep enough
to ease our busiest bones.
Rabidly blinking against the twelve-hour shifts, two-fisted work
punching out our eyes —
we are blind in the flurry of everyday details.
& the flutter in our gaze is an admission
of fanning flames resting on our pillows,
of losing our compass & map,
& how our smiles have faded in this moment.
Our hands cramp & blur in thoughtless motion;
the arches of our bloodied dogs flatten under the weight of our herd;
our hearts sputter in a flood of coffee & whiskey —
we repudiate the mail & refrigerator like enemies;
frantically we finger for stretch-mark pockets
down our goose pimpled thighs
desperate for enough pay
to give time attention.
Monthly utilities — make-believe securities —
every money scheme,
every tax on every flush —
every lien upon our lives
are knives chucked at crabapples atop our skulls.
We trip on noose-knotted laces & dangle from daily worry,
singing little ones to sweet dreams in off-key lies.
We haggle insured deals with the Devil in place of God or hospitals
(dealing with Death is just easier these days).
Still, the flutter of our wings feints flight —
as angels, our horns cock our halos —
we constantly lose feathers —
fall faster from grace than for daughters of men —
as angels, we would gladly molt all hope in ever after
for higher now —
an impassioned now that would bring me to the spirit of your marrow —
please give me a chance for a kiss deep enough to ease our busiest bones,
an embrace stark enough to calm the flutter of flesh
allowing us to open
Matthew D. Jackson works and plays in Columbus, Indiana where he is a professional hair designer, salon owner, spoken word artist, poet, author, amateur photographer, son, husband, father, brother, friend, dog owner, streaker, tea drinker, and vegetarian who sometimes craves steak. A member of the Indiana poetry troupe Reservoir Dogwoods, he is dedicated to keeping the Indiana performance art scene alive, progressive and interesting. He is the author of two collections of poetry, Minding My Chaos and The Sportsman’s Guide to Field Dressing Man.
Indiana Humanities is posting a poem a day from Indiana poets in celebration of National Poetry Month.