Pay Attention to the Goldfish


In the house of 50%
awake, open the cellar door

(the interior one
that will never double as a slide)

to wafts of cinnamon
and boiling fudge.

Take care not to slip
on the steep flight

of stairs with a pair of scissors
in your left hand.

When you reach the bottom,
the cold cement will trigger

an epiphany followed by a moment
of serendipity that compels you

to deliver a soliloquy
on the next nychthemeron

filled with lithe spiders
on the ceiling

and languorous bass players
plucking feathers off

a dark corner’s desperation.
A wood thrush’s flutings

in the distance may tinker
with the phosphorescence

in the glo-sticks
you use to navigate

recurring nightmares
when the moon is too new.

Listen for it.


If barefoot is the word
of the day, she will soak

her left one
in a hotel ice bucket

filled with warm
squash-colored paint

for exactly 1,440 minutes
before taking the risk

to leap across the concrete floor.
Flying will become

a celebration of gravity.
Footprints will explode

into fierce flames
only the rain can erase.

A gutteral scream will erupt
from the deepest cavity

of caged memories.
A how to podcast explains it all

in under 90 seconds—how 10 more
fish escape notice.

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