Those twenty dollars missing from your wallet
remind you of the moment when you slipped
them in your wallet, thinking of something
else. These are the absent moments.
You touch yourself for hints of reassurance:
no wallet! Blood rushes from your face.
You find it though—it’s in a different pocket.
A narrow brush. These are the precious moments.
A blind panhandler taps you on the shoulder.
Absently, you pull your wallet from your
pocket, comb yourself for change. He thanks
you very much. He taps you on the shoulder,
hands you back your twenty dollars. Blood
rushes to your face. You thank him very much.
These were the missing moments. All is well
until he taps you on the shoulder, hands you back
your wallet. Blood rushes to your face. A close
escape. You thank him very much. Arriving home,
you’re missing twenty dollars. You comb your wallet.
You can’t remember. Blood rushes from your face
and fills your pockets. These are the narrow moments.
It’s spinal tap day.
The sun floats into the sky, a giant blood cell.
Birds awaken from dreams of a beetle jackpot.
Gravely, your spoon pierces a soy Junket.
I tell you my assignment from Dad
is getting your pants on. To you, I add. Dumb.
You practiced befuddlement at the pew,
told us death was wafer-plain.
Now my ear traps your frantic bleat for God
like a hit of pond water.
Painstakingly, we accomplish the pants.
Your frailty deserves another whole poem.
This poem is about a spoon
carving scallop shapes into a cup of Junket,
and bearing the wet slabs of custard
to your tongue.
You walked in like the light
From every sun that rose
This year had exploded
Symmetrically from your eyes
I was uncertain—no I was certain
I wanted your eyes to shoot
Laser beams straight through me
It was certain we were soon to be
Bound by something mythological
It was certain that when you moved
The hair away from my mouth
A locust in your eyes
Moved farther afield
It was uncertain if one day
We would be saying
I will not love you
The way I love you presently
It was certain we spoke
The danger language of deer
Moving only when moving
Our velvet bodies in fear
-Christie Ann Reynolds