Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsSpring 2018  Vol. 17 No. 1
an online journal of literature and the arts
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MU Puzzle

Here’s the basket of my
hands. Here’s what’s
inside: spice racks
with old cumin. Furniture
falling apart obstinately,
taste of last night’s
whiskey, invitation to wash
in a dirty bathroom. Say
yes. More coffee, a helping
of nausea, trickle of hot
water too small for two
bodies, crumbs on
the bottoms of my feet.
Here’s the problem:
the puzzle is unsolvable.
The night-light’s dead.
And out there in the dark
your absent son’s toy
dinosaurs; women
who were here before,
expected value of waking
to thin pillows, brilliant
light, words that are
considered, and words
that are ripped from
mouths: I love the way
you smell. Your skin—
I don’t ask much.
Build a system because
it’s time for breakfast;
break it because you want
to win. Heartache
is measured in micromorts
and so, too, is joy.
Here’s the basket
of my sins, my careful
poems. What’s inside
repeats until it’s done.
It’s never done.  

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