A hoard of curiosity has become
swelling heaps of ignorance I dwell among.
When I was more arrogant, I thought I knew
what to save. Now it is all the same.
My questions are all foolish now:
Why don’t tattoos rub off as skin cells do?
Do seagulls drink saltwater? If I were imprisoned
in a cell without a faucet, would I drink toilet water?
A collection of pottery suns on the west wall
greets me daily, and below, pictures of my son,
and my son’s sons. I have dreams no one wants.
I have breast cancer, I’m buried in rubble, I’m drowning.
I can no longer rise from the armchair without aid,
so I stand all day. If I cry, it’s only the memory
of a once-supple body.
I long to sort memory into piles, scorch the rubbish
in an enormous bonfire. I can’t see crevices
of meaning or harvest what is left of those
who have passed before me. It’s the sudden beauty
that haunts me, laced as it is with suffering.
These conjoined twins, our inheritance.
The dead are only dead for us.