Wild Day’s Eye + The Clocked Lion’s Tooth

On a cool, cloudy Sunday morning
in May, she asks herself:
Why

have I resisted
time travel for so long?

Riding in the back seat
during an afternoon hail storm,
she forgets her fear

of cars to focus on the rhythmic
ping-ponging overhead.

She remembers how hail stones
tore holes in the convertible top
to her father’s red Austin-Healey

during Black Friday—an outbreak
of tornadoes and other dramatic weather

that ripped through
Belvidere, Illinois,
on April 21, 1967.

Large white pellets
strewn across the highway

break the spell,
return her to 2022.
She walks all the way home

from the intersection
of obsession and rejection,

determined not to become an empty lot
cleared then forgotten.
Another case of misunderstanding

why wildflowers.
How many No Mow Mays

before “weed”
loses its dirty word status?
Something about removing

piano wire from the ear.
Plucked, not hammered.

She longs for one more moment alone
in a dark room
with her harpsichord.

And they tore down the eyesore
ramshackle house with that door
she was meant to never darken again.

Egress and shelter
float to the top of the list.

No one knows for certain
where the latter came from—
who might walk across the roof

on humid days. As for the former,
some will ask:

Which exit?
Others will call her
the way out.

The shield she carries
cannot protect the shoulder

seasons from shrinking
more each year.
No one’s jumping

out a plane for her.
No one’s pushing her

to leap into a perfectly blue
secret passage
to the shore below.

And then
there’s simply now.

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