Delta Summer

Delta summer plays possum
with Buddhist Sisyphus lessons

a stray cat
evening thunderstorm
slows thoughts

flash flood warnings
notice sensations

deep weather pushes
speechless noise

do not drive unless
it’s an emergency

cherry pits falling
on pistachio shells
sound ready
to compost

the time echo
tastes cold air
turned hot like
when you pee
after iceskating

when I sing for the boa
the kittens trill

why do I peel the tape
off the book spine
leaving it so sticky
I have to retape

fancy snakes sleep
sea scallops split
kimchee mouths

seven steely-eyed sloths simmer seaside
seven slick silver sliders sleek and smirking
seven stuttering splices of smack splash
seven spider slips speak of Spaniards
seven Saturdays splurged on sushi
seven strings silly stop showing
seven sample skeletons sometimes sidle

what if we could
taste with our skin
the way an octopus does

these are the stories
of my hands
on the keyboard

left longer
right wider
left taller
right deeper
left lifts light air
right finds
dinosaur stones

waiting for the
next fearsome thing
running under a lark

diurnal den of dreys
diatomaceous drifter dog
densely dim diner dins
daleths delve deliberating

chasing clockwise thoughts
I cannot track
unraveling directions
heading to the right
the heavier denser side

this posture feels like a hat
I’m not wearing any more
with its numb January hands

circulating left
stiff right
windy left
swizzle stick left
pink flamingo fizzy
Shirley Temple
grenadine syrup left
thick brick right
steady as she goes right
left freedom rides the wind
twice right lines

the math is off
marching 2/2
Sousa horns
your left your left
your left right left

there’s the tie snapped
for the chorus performance

a little yellow book finds
thin pointed pain on the left
shoulder blade
with its uneven glasses

I know if I try I will know
I know nothing

what I know does not matter
what I know makes no difference

the left higher than the right
the left the top step on the ladder
the right the bottom rung

this morning
we make a minyan
of hard boiled eggs

Siri says all the alarms are off
then she says the next alarm
is set for 10 p.m.
make up your mind Siri

a mother bat and her baby
recognize each others’
voices and scents
among thousands
in the nursery colony

a baby bat is a pup
a bat is as smart as a dolphin

vampire bats feeding
hurt no one
the cows do not feel
quick incisions
or lapped up blood

some people suck
but none can pollinate like bats
who maintain and advance
rather than destroy
ecological systems

sensation decomposes
bark turns to mush

I uncoil my head
shit from a mussel

what happened to
the rest of them
I can’t be the only one
waking up to climb

the butterfly effect
shouldn’t be a burden

winter arrives early tonight
or maybe it is just near
the back of my neck

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About the Author

Author of The Golem Verses, Flashes & Specks, and The Golem Returns, Diane's poems also appear in Nine Mile Literary Magazine, Wordgathering, Tammy, Queerly, The South Carolina Review, Welcome to the Resistance: Poetry as Protest, and elsewhere. Diane’s creative nonfiction appears in Stone Canoe, Mollyhouse, The Abstract Elephant Magazine, and Pop the Culture Pill. Her flash fiction appears in Ordinary Madness; short fiction is in A Coup of Owls.

Diane Wiener
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