Funding the Arts and Sciences
Don’t be a baby
about the bugs behind the leaves
Oh no I am thinking about the bugs behind the leaves
at the same time that I am looking at the bugs
behind the leaves and I am even thinking
about looking at the bugs behind the leaves
Surely I shall perish!
That is your problem, child
Baby it’s not a real problem
not like my problem of wilting desire
and I am the fucking sun
Your problem is like you find a dent in your can
My problem is like an electric can opener
It turns on and it buzzes forever
in the expensive space station
No one can go home
Powered by Magnets
a cricket in a bucket
full of milk and a cricket
thought no from his legs
to his two antennae
and the no reached one
of them first and later
the other one died
the milk was goat
milk from the goat
standing over the bucket
and the bucket was yellow
the cricket was green
you had gone out
to the bank and you
did not see it
it the bucket or it
the cricket and no one
else saw it all either
at the bank you licked
the envelope and it
liked it I know because
the envelope was me
sort of moreover
I was your pink tongue
The sea nips at us from a great distance
like a postcard from someone
who calls himself your uncle
and meanwhile think of all the time I’ve wasted
rhyming vacuum with perfume
in search of a new feeling.
This is an unremarked morning
bleeding out on the golden green field.
Everything will eventually reach us
and it is this fact that makes us so tired.
It won’t free us from slogging through time.
If there were a god, it would be a disappointed mother:
They don’t like it, my old-fashioned hours.
What a sensitive god we’ve developed!
(On this gingerly tingling land.)
Heather Christle is the author of four poetry collections, most recently Heliopause (Wesleyan University Press). Other poems can be found in new or upcoming issues of The Believer, London Review of Books, Narrative, and The New Yorker. She lives in Ohio, where she is writing a book of prose about crying.
Photo: Dennie Eagleson