Jesse Minkert

CHARCOAL IN THE MILK

 

Collector of time and twine camping in the pantry
flashlight in an underwater cavern walls all look
alike. What you hear above the clatter:
what can’t exist can’t make demands.

Once these places were one place. Engines
carried us to knowable destinations. Corners
stand now on toes. Jobbers glide past our lips.

Let chance decide. Let rivers flood
the neighborhoods. Let floor lamps
pretend to be bonfires. Mats and napkins
beckon; gestures on the glass.

Master of time and isotopes. Half this life
is half enough. Brother under skin healing
in the dispensary. Neutrinos in the nursery.

Sutures over eyebrows. Sweet sleep
on fresh sheets. Sweat on the face.
Blood in the stool. Clusters of cells
deforming midnight to dawn
Hair grows on the mask.

Once this was all one place. Motors carried us
we didn’t care where. Feathers filled our pillows
pheasants basted in wine pretended to embrace
the fate of many slathered in the same sauce.

 
Jesse Minkert lives in Seattle. He has written plays for theater and radio, short stories, novels, and poems. Wood Works Press published Shortness of Breath & Other Symptoms, in 2008. His poetry appears or is upcoming in Floating Bridge Review, Harpur Palate, Aunt Chloe, Raven Chronicles, and Naugatuck River Review.


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